MADRID, Dec. 17 (Xinhua) -- China's number one seeds Chen Qingchen and Jia Yifan booked their place in the semifinals of the TotalEnergies BWT World Badminton Championships on Friday.
The Chinese duo are the favorites to win the competition that is being held in the southwest Spanish city of Huelva and the Olympic silver medalists defeated their Japanese rivals, Nami Matsuyama and Chiharu Shida 21-13, 21-17 in a match that lasted for 45 minutes, but where they always held a slight advantage.
"It's not easy to get to the semifinals, all of our rivals are tough and have won titles in the previous season," Chen told Xinhua, while Ji was hoping to finally end their medal drought.
"We didn't win any medal in the 2018 or 2019 Worlds, so hopefully we can fight through this time."
"We have got through a lot of difficulties together and we always trust each other," she said.
Chen also looked ahead to Saturday's semifinal against another Japanese pairing, Muyu Matsumoto and Wakana Nagahara. This is a repeat of their meeting in the final of the Uber Cup, which the Chinese pair won after a marathon 117 match.
"I like to challenge the great players like them. We are expecting a lot of long rallies tomorrow and it's going to be a really exciting match, maybe it last over 100 minutes again," she predicted.
In women's singles, He Bigjiao beat Han Yue 21-16, 21-18 in an all-Chinese affair and she will now face a difficult semifinal tie against Tai Tzu-Ying after the top seed overcame India's sixth seeded Pusarla V Sindhu 21-17, 21-13.
Zhang Yiman also made it into the semis where she will play Japan's Akane Yamaguchi after beating Thailand's number 7 seed Ratchanok Intanon 23-21, 21-9, racing away with the second set after a close opener.
Zhao Junpeng was just edged out of a nerve-wracking quarter-final in the men's singles against Lakshya Sen 21-15, 15-21 and 22-20 in a tie where the result was in doubt until the very last play.
Finally in mixed doubles, the fifth seeded pairing of Tang Chun Man and Tse Ying Suet had a easy passage into the last four as they defeated the German pairing Mark Lamsfuss and Isabel Lohau 21-11, 21-10. Enditem