Badminton Life

Gade-Christensen Looks to Bridge The Gap

Denmark's former world number one Peter Gade-Christensen is confident he can close the gap between himself and the world's leading players.

Ranked number five in the world, Gade-Christensen is in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah for the season-ending Super Series Masters Finals, featuring some of the world's leading players.

Recent victories at the Danish Open and French Open has seen Gade-Christensen revive his career and now he is taking aim at top-ranked Lee Chong Wei, of Malaysia, and China's Olympic champion and world number two Lin Dan.

Those wins came after the veteran returned from a lengthy period on the sidelines because of pneumonia and broken ribs.

He was quoted as saying: "I came back and won two titles. I am now number five in the world and it shows that I can give more.

"When I played against Lin Dan at the Beijing Olympics (last August), it was one of my best matches. It gave me hope that I can still play the game well. I need more matches against Lin Dan and Chong Wei to move closer to them."

The US$500,000 tournament features only the top eight players from the 12 Super Series tournaments over the past season.

However, Lin Dan and his Chinese teammates have all withdrawn from the event, with Chinese officials citing fatigue, injuries and a three-month training camp as the reasons.

For the 31-year-old Gade-Christensen, though, the tournament holds much importance as he sacrificed time with his family to be in Malaysia. Indeed, he has a good record in the country having won the Malaysian Open in 2007.

He said: "I like to do well in this tournament. It gives a lot of money. I gave up spending more time with my family during this Christmas season and I hope to return with some good results."

The Dane also talked about one day becoming a coach, possibly for a team other than Denmark, once his playing career winds down.

"For now, coaching is not in my mind but I will become one," he said. "I will be open to offers from outside Denmark. It must be somewhere that I can feel at home, which I do at most of the places. I will be open to many ways. I think, it will be a challenge ... I do like challenges."

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