Thursday, January 16, 2014

M'sian Open: Koo-Tan Shown Exit, Chong Wei Advances To Second

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 (Bernama) -- National top men's doubles pair Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong were shown the exit by unfancied Chinese pair Chai Biao and Hong Wei of China in the first round of the Malaysian Open Super Series badminton championship at the Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil here Wednesday.

Koo/Tan, seeded seventh, lost to the Chinese pair 17-21 and 14-21 in just 39 minutes.

After resting a month and a half from top level competition, Koo admitted that he was disappointed with his performance and had only themselves to blame for the defeat.

"Today is the first day in the ring after our break, frankly there is no excuse for us to lose. The less I say the better because the knives will be out against us.

"Everything is between us, I don't mean we have problems but this is difficult for me...it is our fault but I don't know where we went wrong. Obviously, I am saddened by this situation," he said when approached by reporters after the match. He further admitted that this was their worst performance ever and that it would be a herculean task to rise up again.

As for Tan, he said he hoped their partnership could be saved and remain relevant so that they could make amends for the country.

"We will have to work even harder and set high targets," he said.

Meanwhile, Malaysia's men's singles superstar Datuk Lee Chong Wei lived up to expectations when he easily outplayed Hans-Kristian Vittinghus of Denmark to advance to the second round.

Chong Wei just took 35 minutes to defeat Vittinghus in 21-7 and 21-13 to set up a meeting with Wang Zheming of China in the second round tomorrow.

"My performance today was a little short but the match was not so tough, I expect it to be tougher tomorrow," said Chong Wei, the World Number One.

Commenting on the performance of Kien Keat and Boon Heong and several other compatriots, Chong Wei said he hoped they would rise up again in facing bigger meets.

Two other Malaysian men's singles, Liew Daren and Chong Wei Feng, also crashed out of the first round today.

Another national pair, Goh V Shem and Lim Khim Wah, sprang a pleasant surprise when they cleared the first hurdle by beating world number three doubles pair of Mathias Boe/Carsten Mogensen from Denmark with 24-22, 17-21 and 21-18.

"Last week, we lost to them (in the Korean Open). We studied their play but after this, we need to be more confident in facing a stronger pair," said Lim.

Lim/Goh are scheduled to meet Maneepong Jongjit/Nipitphon Puangpuapech from Thailand in the next game Thursday.

-- BERNAMA

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