Taipei, Sept. 7 (CNA) Taiwanese involvement in the men's doubles at the 2019 Yonex Chinese Taipei Open badminton tournament came to an end in the semi-finals after the nation's last pairing suffered a nail-biting loss Saturday.
Second seeds Lee Yang (李洋) and Wang Chi-lin (王齊麟) of Taiwan were defeated by world No. 18 duo Choi Solgyu and Seo Seung Jae of South Korea -- 21-19, 23-25, 21-23 -- in a tight match that lasted one hour and 17 minutes.
The score remained close throughout the first game, with the Taiwanese pairing, ranked No. 10 in the world, managing to gain the upper hand at the last moment to win 21-19.
However, despite the home court advantage, the South Koreans proved difficult to shake and took the second game to a tie at 20-20. After a series of rallies, Lee and Wang lost the tie-breaker 23-25.
In the third game the tension increased as the two sides took turns in the lead, with the deficit never exceeding three points and resulting in another 20-20 tie.
The South Koreans managed to rally one last time at the end of the match to run out winners 23-21.
The Taiwanese pair won 65 rallies out of 132 played, while the South Koreans won 67.
Lee Yang (李洋, front) and Wang Chi-lin (王齊麟)
One of the reasons for the loss was because towards end of the second and third games, Choi and Seo were better able to find their attacking rhythm, Lee said.
"We were in front for most of the second and third games and only had the tables turned on us towards the end of the games. It seems that we were too conservative in the last moments which made us unable to stop their offensives," Lee said.
The Taiwanese shuttlers previously lost to Choi and Seo at the BWF World Championships in August, in Basel, Switzerland and also at the Toyota Thailand Open 2019 in Bangkok the same month.
The only time Lee and Yang defeated Choi and Seo was at the Total BWF Sudirman Cup in Nanning, China, in May.
Prior to the 2019 Yonex Chinese Taipei Open, Lee and Wang clinched the men's doubles title at the BWF Super 500 event Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2019 in March in New Delhi and the Orleans Masters 2019, a lower Super 100 event, the same month in France.
They also won the title at the Barcelona Spain Masters 2019, a BWF Super 300 event, in February.
Lee Yang (李洋, second right), Wang Chi-lin (王齊麟, right), Choi Solgyu (second left), and Seo Seung Jae (left)