All-England victory catapults Zii Jia to No. 8


PETALING JAYA: Lee Zii Jia has shot up to a career-high No. 8 in the world rankings – thanks to his brilliant victory at the All-England.

The 22-year-old became only the second Malaysian men’s singles player to be ranked inside the top eight in the past decade besides Lee Chong Wei, who has now retired.

Zii Jia found himself slipping one rung below the top 10 following poor outings at the Asian leg of the World Tour in Bangkok two months ago.

However, Zii Jia regained the top 10 after a semi-final outing in the Swiss Open three weeks ago.

Zii Jia will remain at his new spot at least until mid-May as the next World Tour tournament – the Indian Open – will only take place from May 11-16.

Also making their presence felt in the world rankings are fast-rising women’s doubles pair Pearly Tan-M. Thinaah.

Rising fast: Pearly Tan (right) and M. Thinaah have broken into the top 20 and are now 19th.Rising fast: Pearly Tan (right) and M. Thinaah have broken into the top 20 and are now 19th.

The duo, who started the year as world No. 39, have broken into the top 20 and are now 19th.

They complemented their Swiss Open victory with a creditable quarter-final outing at the All-England. The pair, making their debut, pulled off a sensational win over Thailand’s world No. 8 Rawinda Prajongjai-Jongkolphan Kititharakul in the first round.

The players and officials returned home yesterday to a modest reception due to strict standard operating procedures and were met by the National Sports Council (NSC) and Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) officials.

The heavily escorted Zii Jia posed briefly with his All-England medal before heading straight to the bus.

The players and coaches will undergo a seven-day quarantine at a hotel.



WORLD RANKINGS

Men’s singles: 1. Kento Momota (Jpn), 2. Viktor Axelsen (Den), 3. Anders Antonsen (Den), 4. Chou Tien-chen (Tpe), 5. Anthony Ginting (Ina), 6. Chen Long (Chn), 7. Jonatan Christie (Ina), 8. Lee Zii Jia (Mas), 9. Angus Ng (Hkg), 10. Wang Tzu-wei (Tpe).

Selected: 33. Liew Daren, 67. Soong Joo Ven, 78. Cheam June Wei, 96. Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin.

Men’s doubles: 1. Marcus Fernaldi-Kevin Sanjaya (Ina), 2. Hendra Setiawan-Mohammad Ahsan (In), 3. Lee Yang-Wang Chi-lin (Tpe), 4. Hiroyuki Endo-Yuta Watanabe (Jpn), 5. Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda (Jpn), 6. Li Junhui-Liu Yuchen (Chn), 7. Fajar Alfian-Rian Ardianto (Ina), 8. Choi Sol-gyu-Seo Seung-jae (Kor), 9. Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik (Mas), 10. Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty (Ind).

Selected: 13. Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong, 14. Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi, 27. Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzudin Rumsani, 7. Low Hang Yee-Ng Eng Cheong.

Women’s singles: 1. Tai Tzu-ying (Tpe), 2 Chen Yufei (Chn), 3. Nozomi Okuhara (Jpn), 4. Carolina Marin (Spa), 5. Akane Yamaguchi (Jpn), 6. Ratchanok Intanon (Tha), 7. P. V. Sindhu (Ind), 8. An Se-young (Kor), 9. He Bingjiao (Chn), 10. Pornpawee Chochuwong (Tha).

Selected: 33. Soniia Cheah, 60. S. Kisona, 127. Lee Ying Ying, 146. Goh Jin Wei.

Women’s doubles: 1. Yuki Fukushima-Sayaka Hirota (Jpn), 2. Mayu Matsumoto-Wakana Nagahara (Jpn), 3.Chen Qingchen-Jia Yifan (Chn), 4. Lee So-hee-Shin Sheung-chan (Kor), 5. Kim So-yeong-Kong Hee-Yong (Kor), 6. Greysia Polii-Apriyani Rahayu (Ina), 7. Du Yue-Li Yinhui (Chn), 8. Jongkolphan Kititharakul-Rawinda Prajongjai (Tha), 9. Chang Ye-na-Kim Hye-rin (Kor), 10. Nami Matsuyama-Chiharu Shida (Jpn).

Selected: 11. Chow Mei Kuan-Lee Meng Yean (Mas), 17. Vivian Hoo-Yap Cheng Wen, 19. Pearly Tan-M. Thinaah, 70. Yap Ling-Teoh Mei Xing.

Mixed doubles: 1. Zheng Siwei-Huang Yaqiong (Chn), 2. Dechapol Puavaranukroh-Sapsiree Taerattanachai (Tha), 3. Wang Yilyu-Huang Dongping (Chn), 4. Praveen Jordan-Melati Oktavianti (Ina), 5. Yuta Watanabe-Arisa Higashino (Jpn), 6. Seo Seung-jae-Chae Yu-jung (Kor), 7. Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying (Mas), 8. Marcus Ellis-Lauren Smith (Eng), 9. Hafiz Faizal-Gloria Widjaja (Ina), 10. Thom Gicquel-Delphine Delrue (Fra).

Selected: 11. Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing, 12. Goh Soon Huat-Shevon Lai Jemie (Mas), 26. Hoo Pang Ron-Cheah Yee See, 45. Chen Tang Jie-Peck Yen Wei.

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