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Taiwan's Lu wins U.S. international challenge title

2017/12/24 17:30:10

Lu Chia-pin (呂佳彬,left) and Lu Chia-hung (呂家弘, right)

Los Angeles, Dec. 23 (CNA) Taiwanese badminton player Lu Chia-hung (呂家弘) clinched the gold medal in an international challenge in California Saturday, beating his Canadian opponent 14-21, 21-15, 21-16 in the final of the tournament.

Rebounding from a game down, 20-year-old Lu changed his strategy against B.R. Sankeerth by raising his tempo in game two, forcing the Canadian player to commit several errors as a result.

The adjustment proved successful, helping Lu win two consecutive games for a great comeback in the 2017 Yonex/K&D Graphics International Challenge held in Orange County.

It was Lu's first international tournament title of this year.

"The title was won because I have faith in myself," Lu told CNA afterward.

He said the tournament has given him a great opportunity to compete with different styles of play, boosting his experience as well as his confidence.

Currently ranking No. 125 in the world, the Kaohsiung native is a rising star in the Taiwan badminton world. In November 2015, he became the country's first to win a gold in men's singles at the World Junior Championships after beating India's Siril Verma in Lima, Peru.

He suffered a broken arm in early 2016 that took him six months of recovery and rehab before coming back to the game.

After winning the title, Lu immediately joined his older brother Lu Chia-pin (呂佳彬) to vie for the challenge's men's doubles title, playing against British pair Chris Langridge and Marcus Ellis.

The Lu brothers ultimately lost the final 14-21, 17-21.

The second place finish, however, is still considered a great performance given that it was the first time the Lus had teamed up in men's doubles.

The US$20,000 2017 Yonex/K&D Graphics International Challenge Badminton Championships, held Dec. 17-23, is sanctioned by the Badminton World Federation, Badminton Pan Am, and USA Badminton.

(By Edward Tsao and Joseph Yeh)