Lin Dan, Daren Liew advance to Korea Open second round

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As long as Lin Dan can maintain his relatively good BWF ranking, he is going to take it easy until the next Olympic. (photo: AFP)
As long as Lin Dan can maintain his relatively good BWF ranking, he is going to take it easy until the next Olympic. (photo: AFP)

Seoul: Badminton top guns including Lin Dan, Viktor Axelsen, Kento Momota and Malaysia’s independent player Daren Liew have progressed to the Korea Open second round on Wednesday.

The Chinese badminton legend Lin Dan was forced to work hard for a win as he fought back to beat Jan Jorgensen of Denmark 19-21, 21-17, 21-15. The unseeded Lin will take on No. 6 seed Kenta Nishimoto of Japan at the SK Handball Stadium in Seoul on Thursday.

Men’s singles top seed Viktor Axelsen of Denmark needed only 27 minutes to ease past Hsu Jen Hao of Taiwan 21-9, 21-12 to set up second round meeting with Zhao Junpeng of China.

Meanwhile, No. 2 seed Kento Momota’s first round match was tougher than expected as he eventually defeated Chong Wei Feng of Malaysia 21-16, 21-17. Momota will play Anders Antonsen of Denmark for a quarter-final berth.

Malaysia’s Daren Liew, however, survived a surprise test in the opener, before making the second round by outlasting China’s Zhou Zeqi 15-21, 21-10, 21-17 in 52 minutes. Liew will meet No. 8 seed Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia next.

The Malaysian camp also enjoyed good news through its women’s doubles and men’s doubles departments as Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean, Vivian Hoo/Yap Cheng Wen (women’s doubles) and Chooi Kah Ming/Low Juan Shen, Aaron Chia/Soh Wooi Yik (men’s doubles) also cruised into the second round.

This was the first tournament in which Chooi Kah Ming/Low Juan Shen were playing as an independent pair. They are going to take on No. 7 seeds Liao Min Chun/Su Ching Heng on Thursday.

The opening match between Aaron Chia/Soh Wooi Yik and Bodin Isara/Maneepong Jongjit of Thailand was an extensive nail-biter, with Chia/Soh ultimately seeing off the Thai pair 24-22, 26-24. Chia/Soh will meet Huang Kaixiang/Wang Zekang in the next round.

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