SHANGHAI: Chinese women's duo Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli dominated play to advance to the finals of the China Open on Saturday in their first tournament together since being kicked out of the London Olympics for playing to lose.
The pair dispatched Thailand's Narissapat Lam and Saralee Thoungthongkam 21-9, 21-4 to head for the Sunday final as they seek to put behind them the controversial Olympic performance.
Yu and Wang were involved in one of the Games' darker moments when they were among eight players angrily booed and then disqualified for trying to lose round-robin games in the hope of securing a favourable quarter-final draw.
Yu said she was retiring but resumed playing for the Super Series Premier event in Shanghai, after being cleared by sporting authorities.
All the players involved in the Olympics row have been cleared to resume competition, although the four from South Korea are still barred from their national team.
The men's singles semi-finals surprised as the number two seed Chen Jin gave a walkover to his Chinese countryman Wang Zhengming because of a foot injury.
The win by top seed Chen Long will make the final an all-Chinese affair after he beat Malaysian Chong Wei Feng 21-6, 21-7.
In the women's singles, Chinese Olympic champion Li Xuerui beat Japan's French Open winner Mitani Minatsu 21-8, 23-21 to make the finals.
"I felt more pressure from media and fans after I won gold at the London Olympics. I'm trying to forget about the title of Olympic champion," Li said.
She will face Ratchanok Inthanon of Thailand who beat Juliane Schenk 18-21, 21-10, 21-14 after the German failed to convert her shock victory over China's world number one Wang Yihan a day earlier.
Top seeds Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen of Denmark will face Korean men's doubles team Ko Sung-Hyun and Lee Yong-Dae, who are newly matched after Lee's former partner retired after the Olympics, in the final.