Kuala Lumpur: After defeating No. 3 seed Anders Antonsen in the first round and No. 7 seed Shi Yuqi of China 12-21, 21-16, 21-19 in the quarter-finals, Malaysia’s Lee Zii Jia didn’t want to put too much pressure on himself ahead of Saturday’s semi-final against World No. 1 Kento Momota.
Prior to the semi-final, rumor has been swirling on social media that the World No. 1 was forced to withdraw from the Indonesia Masters next week due to injury, but Lee didn’t want to believe in that rumor.
“If his condition was really bad, why could he still winning and able to advance to the semi-final,” asked Lee at the Axiata Arena.
The 21-year-old was determined that no matter how Momota would be doing, he would still respect him and prepare for the best possible fight on Saturday.
“It’s hard to play against Momota, it’s not easy to beat him. He’s the world’s number one player, but I’ll play my best. I’ll need to cut down my mistakes, be more aggressive than Momota,” added Lee.
Lee also claimed that victory over Shi Yuqi was extremely encouraging.
“As I said there is a lot to be learned here at Malaysia Masters, which has been a success in the process from the beginning to the present.”
In mixed doubles, Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying have defeated Takuro Hoki/Wakana Nagahara of Japan 21-15, 21-18 to advance to the semi-final.
According to Chan, they were relieved to have reached the semi-final and were focused to do the same at the Indonesia Masters next week to secure a place in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
“The Olympic qualification re-started in January. So we have to reach the semi-finals at Masters Malaysia and Indonesia Masters in order to earn better chance to qualifying for the Olympics,” said Chan.
Chan/Goh will meet No. 2 seeds Wang Yi Lyu/Huang Dong Ping of China next.
Meanwhile, another Malaysian mixed pair Goh Soon Huat/Shevon Jemie Lai was beaten by China’s No. 1 seeds Zheng Si Wei/Huang Ya Qiong 11-21, 9-21.
The men’s doubles action saw Malaysia’s men’s doubles pair Teo Ee Yi/Ong Yew Sin went down to Korean pair Kim Gi Jung/Lee Yong Dae 21-19, 15-21, 20-22 on Friday.