Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan
Lee Chong Wei (L) eyes 12 title at Malaysia Open Reuters

Top seed Lee Chong Wei takes on seventh seed Lin Dan in the Men's singles final of 2017 Malaysia Superseries Premier at the Jalan Stadium in Kuching on Sunday.

The two shuttlers are meeting for the 38th time in their careers with Lin having a 25-12 head-to-head advantage over Chong Wei. However, in their last three meetings, which includes the 2016 Rio Olympics Men's singles semi-final, the world number one has had the better of the two-time Olympic champion from China.

Lin had to work hard for his win yesterday over South Korea's Son Wan Ho in the semi-final. In a match, that went on for an hour and 24 minutes, the world number six emerged victorious 27-25, 19-21, 21-16.

Read report: Lin Dan finally wins maiden Malaysia Open title

On the other hand, the 11-time champion decimated his semi-final opponent Vincent Ki Wong 21-12, 21-9 in just 4o minutes to meet his arch rival on Sunday, much to the delight of badminton fans across the globe.

The only major title that is absent from Lin's famous trophy cabinet is the Malaysia Open and the Chinese legend has come close to winning it thrice in the past. In 2005 and 2006, it was Chong Wei, who defeated him in the final and in 2015, it was Chen Long who finished at the top step of the podium.

Notably, 11 years ago, Lin was a point away from winning the title in the decider (20-13) but Chong Wei made a stunning comeback to snatch the title. With both shuttlers in the twilight of their careers, neither of them would want to end up on the losing side at one of the biggest stages of badminton today. Given their recent form, there is very little to separate them on paper as well.

While Chong Wei recovered from a knee injury he suffered in February and went on to produce one of the most complete displays at All England Championships last month and win the title in Birmingham, Lin suffered a disappointing exit in the semi-final after defeat to compatriot Shi Yuqi.

However, the Chinese shuttler buckled up and won the Swiss Open last month avenging his defeat to Shi in the title match. However, Lin has spent nearly an hour and thirty minutes more than Chong Wei on the court in Malaysia as he has played three matches that went to the deciders.

Focus thus will be on Lin's fitness as well as he will look to rewrite history in Kuching.

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