Wuhan: Four-time Badminton Asia Championships winner and former badminton world No. 1 Lin Dan suffered a surprisingly early exit on Wednesday, as the two-time Olympic champion went down fighting to Wang Tzu Wei of Chinese Taipei 15-21, 21-9, 21-16 on Wednesday.
“I played well in the first set, but I lost my focus in the second,” said Lin.
“I was thinking too much in the decider, and Wang was more aggressive and made less mistake,” added Lin.
Wang will meet HS Prannoy of India in the second round.
This was Lin’s third first-round exit of the season, he lost to Ihsan Maulana Mustofa on Indonesia at the 2018 Perodua Malaysia Masters and to Kantaphon Wangcharoen of Thailand at the 2018 German Open.
Meanwhile, defending champion Chen Long won an easy first round match 21-8, 21-8 against Bahaedeen-Ahmad Alshannik of Jordan on Wednesday. Chen will play Sai Praneeth on Thursday.
“It was my first match and I was a little shaky,” said Chen.
“After the Asia Championships, we will play the Thomas Cup, and after that there will be Asian Games. There are a lot of big tournaments this year,” added Chen.
Meanwhile, two-time champion Lee Chong Wei was able to overcome local shuttler Qiao Bin 21-17, 21-16 to set up a second-round meeting with Anthony Sinisuka Ginting of Indonesia.
The reigning All-England champion Shi Yuqi also had an easy first round win, after his South Korean rival – Lee Dong Keun retired from the competition when Shi took the lead 21-3, 6-2. Shi will clash with former world No.2 Kento Momota of Japan on Thursday.
In men’s doubles, former World No. 1 pair and No. 8 seeds Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong of Malaysia survived a huge scare from unseeded Liao Min Chun/Su Ching Heng of Taiwan to beat them 24-22, 22-20. Goh/Tan are set to face Berry Angriawan/Hardianto Hardianto of Indonesia to fight for a spot in the quarter-finals.