KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - World number one Lee Chong Wei on Saturday advanced to the last round of the BWF World Superseries Finals, closing in on winning the title for a record fourth time.
The Malaysian, who won the men's singles crowns from 2008-2010, crushed Denmark's Jan O Jorgensen 21-14, 21-16 in 40 minutes to reach Sunday's final on home turf.
Lee jointly holds the record of three titles with women's pair Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang of China and Danish men's pair Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen.
The two doubles pairs, however, were eliminated in Saturday's semi-finals, paving the way for Lee to rewrite the record books on his own.
Wang and Yu, who won from 2010-2012, pulled out due to injury, while Boe and Mogensen lost 21-18, 21-18 to world champions Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan of Indonesia.
It was a straightforward victory for Lee, whose court coverage and ability to retrieve every shuttlecock Jorgensen hit at him frustrated the Dane.
Lee beat the French Open champion 23-21, 24-22 at the group stage on Friday.
"Today, I was ready for him. I was determined to beat him quickly and started the match on fire," the Olympic silver medallist said.
"The only downside to my victory was that I allowed him back into the match in the second game after taking a big lead." "I have to cut this out as it is not good to give opponents a hint of a comeback." In the final, Lee will meet Indonesia's Tommy Sugiarto, who beat Japan's Kenichi Tago 21-14, 19-21, 21-5.
In women's singles, China's Li Xuerui easily beat South Korea's Bae Yeon-Ju in two games, while Taiwan's Tai Tzu Ying defeated Wang Shixian of China in three games.
In the women's doubles, world champions Wang and Yu raised eyebrows when they conceded a walkover to compatriots Ma Jin and Tang Jinhua, after citing a hip injury to Yu.
This is not the first time Chinese players have opted out of facing others from their country in international matches, and comes on the heels of the Badminton World Federation (BWF) introducing a random draw for the semi-finals in a bid to avoid "game-throwing".
The change was prompted by the scandal at last year's Olympics, when Wang and Yu together with three other women's pairs were charged for not using their "best efforts" to win matches.
In the finals, Ma and Tang will now take on Denmark's Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl, who defeated South Koreans Jang Ye-Na and Kim So-Young 21-12, 21-18 on Saturday.
The Danish duo, who have a good track record in Malaysia, are hoping to become the first European winners of this category.
In the men's doubles, Kim Ki-Jung and Kim Sa-Rang defeated fellow South Koreans Ko Sung-Hyun and Lee Yong-Dae 21-14, 19-21, 21-16.