Canada’s badminton players put in some good performances in Rio, but it wasn’t ultimately enough to compete for podium positions.
She cruised to victory in her first preliminary match on Saturday, defeating Laura Sarosi of Hungary in two sets (21-11, 21-8). But Li ran into a bigger challenge on Sunday against P.V. Sindhu of India.
Li won the first set against the favoured Sindhu—who entered with a world ranking of No. 10, compared to Li at No. 20—but fell in three sets (21-19, 15-21, 17-21).
“I knew that I was making a lot of unforced errors,” said Li, 24. “Even so, I still tried to fight for every point and bounce back from it.”
Some frustration showed at the end of the match, when Li had words with the chair umpire before shaking Sindhu’s hand. But, as Li said, “it’s in the past now”.
On the men’s side, 25-year-old Martin Giuffre produced a decent showing in his first Olympic Games.
Giuffre, who came into Rio ranked No. 75 in the world, fought hard against No. 13-ranked Angus Ng of Hong Kong in his match on Thursday, falling in two sets (11-21, 14-21).
But he’ll head home on a high note, after earning his first victory on the Olympic stage, a three-set win (14-21, 24-22, 21-6) over Portugal’s Pedro Martins on Saturday.
Despite the victories in group-stage play, neither Li nor Giuffre will be advancing to the knockout stage in badminton singles.