Wind can’t stop Jun Hao from blowing away Tsuneyama


PETALING JAYA: Leong Jun Hao, well aware of the notorious draught at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, turned up the attacking mode to secure a convincing win over Japanese dangerman Kanta Tsuneyama to reach the second round of the Singapore Open yesterday.

World No. 36 Jun Hao did not allow Tsuneyama, known for his rallying game, to settle into the match and secured a 21-13, 21-16 win in 45 minutes.

Jun Hao will either meet world No. 7 Anthony Ginting of Indonesia or compatriot Lee Zii Jia in the second round tomorrow.

Zii Jia, who won the Thailand Open two weeks ago and finished runner-up at the Malaysian Masters on Sunday, has also improved his ranking by one spot from No. 10 to No. 9 in the latest rankings.

It will be an interesting clash between the in-form Zii Jia and Ginting after the Indonesian had decided to withdraw from the Thailand Open and the Malaysian Masters.

Jun Hao, who is playing in his first super 750 tournament, opted to keep his returns low and attacked whenever there is chance to pile the pressure on Tsuneyama and the tactic gave him a rousing start in Singapore.

“The draught is quite heavy in the stadium and since Tsuneyama is a good stroke player, I decided to reduce playing rallies. It was a good performance for me,” said Jun hao.

“There has been a lot of ups and downs in my career but this is a new start in a super 750 where I want to start winning more matches and be more consistent.

“My objective is to produce some solid results and try to get into the top 25 by end of this year.”

Jun Hao, who normally had to qualify for the main draw of the super 500 tournaments, had gained direct entry into the main draw of the Thailand Open and Malaysian Masters due to withdrawals.

A good run in the next few tournaments should see him moving up into the top 32 where he doesn’t have to worry about playing in the qualifying rounds any more.

Meanwhile, independent shuttler Goh Jin Wei is the only Malaysian playing in the women’s singles but faces an uphill task against former Olympic and world champion Carolina Marin of Spain today.

World No. 3 Marin is in fiery form as she had won a hattrick of All England, Swiss Open and European individual titles and will start as one of the favourites in Singapore. Malaysians unless stated Men’s singles: Leong Jun Hao bt Kanta Tsuneyama (Jpn) 21-13, 21-16.

FIRST ROUND RESULTS

Men’s doubles: Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin Rumsani bt Lu Ching-yau-Yang Po-han (Tpe) 21-18, 21-13.

Women’s doubles: Liu Shengshu-Tan Ning (Chn) bt Pearly Tan-M. Thinaah 21-10, 21-10.

Mixed doubles: Chen Tang Jie-Toh Ee Wei bt Hoo Pang Ron-Cheng Su Yin 21-15, 21-17.

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