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China crushes Netherlands 5-0 in Thomas Cup

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-10-13 09:25
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Lu Guangzu of China competes in the men's singles match against Joran Kweekel of the Netherlands during a group C match between China and the Netherlands at Thomas Cup badminton tournament in Aarhus, Denmark, Oct 12, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

AARHUS, Denmark -- China's men's badminton team overpowered the Netherlands 5-0 in the second round of the Thomas Cup group stage here on Tuesday.

In the opener of singles, China's Lu Guangzu defeated Joran Kweekel of the Netherlands in straight sets 21-15, 21-19, though Lu was behind most of the time in the second set.

"This is my first outing in the Thomas Cup, so I was a bit nervous to play the openers for two rounds," said the 24-year-old Lu. "I overcame difficulties to claim the victory and this is a very important experience for the following matches."

"Kweekel is tall and the shuttle speed here in Ceres Arena is a bit slow. He might make full use of it," said Lu. "I was trying to turn the tide, even in a 50-50 match, I tried to make it on my side. I believe I could still win the decider if I lost the second set."

Liu's teammates then barely met challenges from their Dutch opponents in the following match-ups. He Jiting and Zhou Haodong swept past Ruben Jille and Ties van der Lecq, 21-11, 21-7. 21-year-old Li Shifeng outclassed 19-year-old Robin Mesman 21-7, 21-8 in 24 minutes.

Liu Cheng and Wang Yilyu smashed the young pair of Andy Buijk and Brian Wassink 21-14, 21-10 in 25 minutes, before 22-year-old Weng Hongyang outplayed 21-year-old Gijs Duijs 21-10, 21-6 in the final tie.

China will meet India here on Thursday in the final round of Thomas Cup group competition.

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