PETALING JAYA: Mixed doubles pair Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying are not giving up hope although the path to reach the quarter-finals looks dim.
The independent shuttlers blew a good chance to have an early advantage after going down fighting 18-21, 21-10, 16-21 to world No. 13 Tan Chun Man-Tse Ying Suet in their first Group D match at the Musashino Forest Sports Plaza yesterday.
The 2016 Rio Olympic Games silver medallists had the Hong Kong pair by the jugular in the decider but a few missteps in the crucial stage saw them losing again to their nemesis.
It was their fifth defeat against them over five years.
The Malaysians have only beaten them once at the 2016 Taiwan Open.
With the defeat, the Malaysians are in danger of missing the top eight elimination battle.
Only the top two pairs from every group will advance to the quarter-finals.
The Malaysians will play Germany’s Marks Lamsfuss-Isabel Herttrich today and their final match will be against world No. 2 Wang Yilyu-Huang Dongping of China.
The 33-year-old Peng Soon rued the missed chance.
“Both pairs played well. It was an equally contested match but we wasted the opportunity at the end,” said Peng Soon.
“This is not over yet. We will be ready for the next matches.”
Although the Malaysians have never lost to the German pair, they will not take their opponents for granted.
“We’ll just have to stay focused and not be affected by our close defeat today.”
If they come through the Germans, Peng Soon-Liu Ying will have a tall order against the Chinese pair as they have won only two out of their six meetings.