Dechapol, Sapsiree through to semis

Dechapol, Sapsiree through to semis

Ratchanok in a tight spot after He defeat

Sapsiree Taerattanachai plays a shot as Dechapol Puavaranukroh looks on during their match against Tan Kian Meng and Lai Pei Jing of Malaysia on Thursday.
Sapsiree Taerattanachai plays a shot as Dechapol Puavaranukroh looks on during their match against Tan Kian Meng and Lai Pei Jing of Malaysia on Thursday.

Two-time defending champions Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattanachai advanced to the semi-finals of the US$1.5 million HSBC BWF World Tour Finals at Bangkok's Nimibutr Stadium on Friday.

The top-ranked duo defeated Tan Kian Meng and Lai Pei Jing of Malaysia 21-9, 21-11 for their second straight win in Group B and are now guaranteed a place in tomorrow's last four.

They will play China's Wang Yilyu and Huang Dongping in their final group match today.

Wang and Huang handed another Thai pair Supak Jomkoh and Supissara Paewsampran a second defeat, 21-16, 21-7.

Supak and Supissara lost to Dechapol and Sapsiree in the opener on Wednesday.

In the mixed doubles Group A, China's Zheng Siwei and Huang Yaqiong also won their second match, beating Rinov Rivaldy and Pitha Mentari of Indonesia 21-9, 22-20.

France's Thom Giquel and Delphine Delrue, who lost to Zheng and Huang on Wednesday, bounced back with a 16-21, 21-18, 21-17 win over Malaysia's Goh Soon Huat and Shevon Jemie Lai.

Ratchanok Intanon suffered her first defeat after losing to He Bingjiao 21-17, 24-22 in Group B. She plays Tai Tzu-ying of Taiwan in the final match today, with the winner progressing to the last four.

Busanan Ongbamrungphan, who lost to Ratchanok on Wednesday, remained winless after losing to Tai 22-20, 21-16.

In Group A, Tokyo Olympic cham- pion Chen Yufei of China got her first win as she beat Akane Yamagushi of Japan 21-19, 21-18.

Chen lost to Gregoria Mariska Tunjung of Indonesia on Wednesday in three games.

Holder An Se-Young, who lost to Yamaguchi on Wednesday, beat Tunjung 21-9, 11-21, 21-10 yesterday.

In the women's doubles event, Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai lost to Jeong Na-Eun and Kim Hye-Jeong of South Korea 21-14, 21-12 in Group A.

Earlier, Benyapa Aimsaard and Nuntakarn Aimsaard, who lost to Jongkolphan and Rawinda in their opener, bounced back after they beat Vivian Hoo and Lim Chiew Sien of Malaysia 21-9, 21-12.

Jongkolphan and Rawinda need to beat Hoo and Sien in their final group match today to advance.

In the men's singles event, champion Viktor Axelsen of Denmark also progressed to the semi-finals after beating Kodai Naraoka of Japan 21-5, 21-15 for his second win in Group A.

In Group B, Anthony Ginting claimed his second win in Group B, beating Chou Tien-chen 21-14, 12-21, 21-19.

Ginting rallied to beat fellow Indonesian Jonatan Christie 6-21, 21-10, 21-9 in Group B opener on Wednesday.

Christie, meanwhile, battled past Loh Kean Yew of Singapore 16-21, 22-20, 21-10.

The top-two players and pairs in each group advance to the semi-finals.

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