Lee Chong Wei made the second round of the Singapore Open after beating Hong Kong's Wei Nan on Wednesday. - AFP filepic
PETALING JAYA: World No. 1 Lee Chong Wei got off to a perfect start in the Singapore Open as he bids to win his fourth title of the year.
The 31-year-old wasn’t given too much trouble by the lanky China-born Wei Nan of Hong Kong, winning 21-17, 21-15 in 40 minutes.
With world No. 2 Chen Long opting to skip the meet and several top names such as Japan’s Kenichi Tago, Indonesia’s Tommy Sugiarto and Thailand’s Boonsak Ponsana pulling out at the eleventh hour, the title is now Chong Wei’s to lose.
The two-time Olympic silver medallist, who last competed in the Singapore Open six years ago and emerged champion that year, will meet China’s Chen Yuekun in the second round.
The 23-year-old Yuekun easily brushed aside independent shuttler Tan Chun Seang 21-13, 21-11 in just 26 minutes.
Former national champion Misbun Ramdan Misbun who left the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) almost pulled through.
But the 23-year-old Ramdan, who now trains under his father Misbun Sidek, lost out on experience to 32-year-old world No. 14 Hu Yun of Hong Kong 21-19, 16-21, 8-21.
In women’s singles, the trio of Tee Jing Yi, Yang Li Lian and Lydia Cheah all crashed out.
The mixed doubles pair of Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying however delivered some smiles to the Malaysian camp as they secured a comprehensive win over South Koreans Shin Baek-cheol-Eom Hye-won.
The pair, who are playing together for the first time since the Malaysian Open in January, won 21-17, 21-19 and will go on to meet China’s Liu Cheng-Bao Yixin for a place in the quarter-finals.
“It feels good to win and to be back on court,” said Liu Ying, who spent two months undergoing rehabilitation on her knees.
“I actually feel fresh out there today. Hopefully I’ll keep on playing the same way in the next round.”
Peng Soon-Liu Ying are joined in the second round by scratch pair Ong Jian Guo-Lee Meng Yean, who were too strong for compatriots Mohd Adib Haiqal-Sannatasah Saniru, winning 21-11, 21-10.