Malaysia seals Thomas Cup Finals slot by beating Hong Kong

ALOR SETAR: The Malaysian men's team has sealed its ticket to the Thomas Cup Finals after storming into the semi-finals of the Asia Team Badminton Championships.

Malaysia really turned on the heat when it mattered as the team produced a breathtaking performance to beat Hong Kong 3-0 in the quarter-finals at the Sultan Abdul Halim Stadium on Friday.

World No. 2 Lee Chong Wei(pic) led the way as he overcame Angus Ng Ka Long 21-15, 22-20 in the first singles tie.

Rio Olympic silver medallists Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong then put up their best showing of the week by crushing Or Chin Chung-Tang Chun Man 21-11, 21-16 in just 28 minutes.

That set the stage for Alor Setar boy Lee Zii Jia.

And the 19-year-old didn’t disappoint as he outclassed world No. 14 Wong Wing Ki 21-16, 21-15 for the winning point.

It was quite the turnaround for Malaysia who started the campaign on a sorry note, losing to Thailand 3-2 in the group stages.

The win also means Malaysia have met the requirements of finishing in the top four, thus earning themselves an automatic spot to the Thomas Cup Finas that is held in Bangkok in May.

“I’m happy and proud for getting the winning point. It’s also the point that sends us to the Thomas Cup Finals. Now I hope to keep my form going in the semi-finals,” said Zii Jia.

Malaysia next face either China or India in the last four.