PETALING JAYA: Young shuttlers Lee Zii Jia and Goh Jin Wei (pic) have checked into the semi-finals of the Taiwan Open.
The 19-year-old Zii Jia looks to be shaping up well for next month’s Kuala Lumpur SEA Games when he dumped eighth seed Khosit Phetpradab of Thailand in the men’s singles quarter-finals at the Taipei Arena yesterday.
This will be Zii Jia’s second semi-final appearance in a Grand Prix Gold tournament, having also reached the last four of the second-tier Thailand Masters in February.
Zii Jia will face Taiwanese top seed Chou Tien-chen for a place in the final.
World No. 109 Zii Jia, who has not played against the world No. 6 player before, is looking forward to today’s big test.
“I’m happy to have made the semi-finals for the second time this year. It’ll be tougher tomorrow (today) but I hope to put up a worthy fight,” said Zii Jia, who is the only Malaysian survivor in the men’s singles following the defeat of seasoned campaigner Liew Daren.
The 30-year-old Daren lost 13-21, 21-18, 14-21 to 22-year-old Jeon Hyeok-jin of South Korea in 67 minutes.
Seventeen-year-old Jin Wei gave a good account of herself in the women’s singles when she defeated Pau Yu-po of Taiwan 21-15, 21-17 to reach her first semi-final this year.
The third seed will take on unheralded Haruko Suzuki of Japan today.
Back-up shuttlers Chooi Kah Ming-Low Juan Shen also put up a strong showing to beat Choi Solgyu-Kim Jae-hwan of South Korea 14-21, 22-20, 28-26 in a 62-minute men’s doubles quarter-final match.
Kah Ming-Juan Shen, who are preparing for the World Championships in Glasgow from Aug 21-27, will be out for revenge against second seeds Chen Hung-ling-Lee-yang of Taiwan after losing to them at the China Masters in April.
Said national coach Jeremy Gan: “I’m pleased with their good showing against the formidable Korean pair. Hopefully, they can continue with this momentum and build up their confidence ahead of the world meet.”
It was, however, all over for third seeds Lim Yin Loo-Yap Cheng Wen in women’s doubles. They lost 21-17, 12-21, 15-21 to South Koreans Chae Yoo-jung-Kim So-yeong.
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