Lee wins Japan Open badminton title

AFP-JIJI

Two-time champion Lee Chong Wei fended off a spirited challenge from Boonsak Ponsana to win the men’s singles title at the Chinese-boycotted Japan Open badminton tournament on Sunday.

The Malaysian top seed, the winner in Japan in 2007 and 2010, powered his way through to a 21-18, 21-18 victory over the Thai.

In the women’s singles final, Tai Tze-ying of Taiwan dashed any hopes of a title for Japan by beating Eriko Hirose 9-21, 21-9, 21-14.

“It was really a good match, but it was tough,” said Lee.

“This is my first tournament after the London Olympics. I’m very happy to start with this victory. I can put my disappointment behind me,” added Lee, who lost to China’s Lin Dan in the Olympic finals both in London and Beijing.