SINGAPORE: Indonesia’s Anthony Ginting remains on course to defend his Singapore Open title after Thailand’s Kunlavut Vitidsarn was forced to pull out from the men’s singles semifinal today.
After winning the first game 21-19 against Ginting, Kunlavut lost the second 11-21 before deciding to retire from the third game when he was trailing 6-1.
“I felt a sharp pain in my right shoulder and decided it’s in my best interest to stop as the season ahead is very long and I do not want to aggravate the injury further,” said Kunlavut.
Ginting wished his opponent a speedy recovery and said he looks forward to tomorrow’s showdown with Denmark’s Anders Antonsen, who is enjoying a return to form having suffered multiple injuries last year.
“It was unfortunate Kunlavut had to retire and I hope he recovers fast. I’ve played against Anders many times and we are familiar with each other. But it will come down to the court conditions tomorrow and I look forward to the challenge,” said Ginting.
Antonsen survived an epic clash with Japan’s Kodai Naraoka where he recovered from losing seven consecutive points in the first game to finally prevail 21-16 and 21-17 in the second and third games.
“The last year has been crazy as I was lacking consistency. I had so many injuries and had to withdraw from so many tournaments. I wanted this (win) so badly and it feels so good to be playing in the final again,” said Antonsen.
In the women’s singles, world No 1 Akane Yamaguchi of Japan dispatched China’s Chen Yufei 21-10, 18-21, 21-16 to set up a mouth-watering clash with world No 2, An Se-young of South Korea, who eliminated Taiwan’s Tai Tzu Ying in straight games 21-16, 21-14.