PETALING JAYA: World No. 10 Hoon Thien How-Tan Wee Kiong are one step closer to winning their first title after storming into the semi-finals of the Macau Open GP Gold.
The pair were too strong for South Korea’s Choi Sol-kyu-Kang Ji-wook in the quarter-finals on Friday – winning 21-17, 21-17 in 36 minutes.
It will be their third straight semi-final appearance – after the French Open and China Open, where they also made the finals.
The win also erased Thien How-Wee Kiong’s painful memories of losing to Ji-wook-Lee Sang-joon in the second round of the Malaysian Open in January.
“We definitely played better than in the second round,” said Wee Kiong. “We lost to one of these younger Korean pairs earlier in January and it was important to get a good start.
“Basically, we did not dwell on the past … we instead focused on our own strategy and the opponents on the day.
“As for the title … we try not to think about stuff that hasn’t happened yet.
“We just want to go through the matches one at a time. After all, our opponents tomorrow (Saturday) will be strong too.”
The second seeds will face either third seeds Maneepong Jongjit-Nipitphon Puangpuapech of Thailand or fifth seeds Liang Jui Wei-Liao Kuan Hao of Taiwan in the semi-finals.
While Thien How-Wee Kiong were on a high in Macau, there was only disappointment for the other Malaysian shuttlers a day earlier.
Eighth seeds Lim Khim Wah-Ow Yao Han lost to the veteran Indonesian-Japanese combination of Alvent Yulianto-Shintaro Ikeda 12-21, 21-19, 14-21.
SEA Games-bound Vivian Hoo-Woon Khe Wei suffered an embarrassing 12-21, 21-23 loss to China youngsters Huang Yaqiong-Yu Xiaohan in the second round of the women’s doubles.
Second-seeded mixed doubles pair Tan Aik Quan-Lai Pei Jing also fell to a young China pair – Huang Kaixiang-Chen Qingchen – 10-21, 21-10, 19-21.