Vladivostok: Chong Wei Feng has once again become the disappointed man on badminton court, when he was squeezed out of the Russian Open by the No. 3 seed Ajay Jayaram of India in a one-sided quarter-final match.
Chong who won the Singapore SEA Games men’s singles gold medal in June, lost to Ajay 15-21, 13-21 in 30 minutes to once again missed out on a fantastic opportunity to clinch his first ever international title.
Men’s singles top seed Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia continued his dominant run in the Russian Open by defeating European Games champion Pablo Abian of Spain 21-17, 21-9 in 42 minutes. Sugiarto will take on Jayaram in the semi-final.
Meanwhile, former world junior champion Zulfadli Zulkiffli drained the resistance of Israeli Misha Zilberman in 48 minutes, winning 21-17,21-9. Zulkiffli will meet Raul Must of Estonia on Saturday.
Malaysia’s men’s doubles pair Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong toyed with Konstantin Abramov/Alexandr Zinchenko for much of Friday’s quarter-final, prevailing 21-14, 21-7, while another Malaysian pair Hoon Thien How/Lim Khim Wah enjoyed a much tougher afternoon in Vladivostok, as they held off a late surge from Nikita Khakimov/Vasily Kuznetsov by winning 21-9, 23-21. Both Malaysian pairs will face off against each other in the semi-final on Saturday.
Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying who are looking to climb up the BWF rankings, fought off a brave challenge by Rodion Alimov/Alina Davletova to reach the mixed doubles semi-final. They will take on third seeds Vitalij Durkin/Nina Vislova of Russia to earn final berth.
In what was considered the luckiest draw in the tournament, Japanese women’s doubles pair Arisa Higashino/Chisato Hoshi had walkovers in their first, second round and quarter-final. Their semi-final match against Johanna Goliszewski/Carla Nelte of Germany on Saturday would be their first match in the tournament.