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Chinese flex muscles in world team quarter-finals

Written by: Staff

TOKYO, May 3 (Reuters)- China moved closer to defending their titles in the Thomas and Uber Cups with easy quarter-finals victories today.

World number one Lin Dan complained about the lights and air-conditioning but was still able to spark China's 3-0 victory over England with a 18-21 21-12 21-12 win over Andrew Smith.

China also won the doubles before Bao Chunlai sealed their place in the semi-finals of the men's world team event by beating Nick Kidd 21-12 21-15.

''I made some silly mistakes while I was ahead in the first game but it was just a case of getting used to the conditions in the gym,'' Lin told reporters.

''I found some form in the next two games after I came to terms with the lights and the cold from the air-conditioning.'' China's men take on Indonesia in Friday's Thomas Cup semi-finals after the 13 times champions overcame hosts Japan 3-1.

Olympic and world champion Taufik Hidayat was stunned 20-22 21-16 24-22 by Shoji Sato in the opening rubber before the Indonesia side came roaring back to win the next three.

''It was always going to be difficult during the Thomas Cup,'' said Hidayat, who has been struggling with a back injury.

''I will work to get back to fitness when I get home.'' Denmark eased into the semi-finals with a 3-0 victory over India.

Olympic champion Zhang Ning propelled China's women to another 3-0 whitewash with a 21-18 21-18 victory over Li Li in their opening rubber against Singapore in the Uber Cup.

China were never seriously threatened in the doubles and Jiang Yanjiao completed the rout.

The Chinese are red hot favourites to win their fifth straight title in the women's team event. They play Germany in tomorrow's semi-finals.The Germans beat Hong Kong 3-2.


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