Basel: Despite fighting back from a set down to beat Ireland’s Scott Evans 18-21, 23-21, 21-11 in the men’s singles first round of Swiss Open yesterday, Malaysia’s national champion Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin lost his second round match to Muhammad Bayu Pangisthu of Indonesia at the St. Jakobshalle Badminton Center in Basel when Zainuddin had to retire while trailing 9-17 in the second set due to injury.
The 2011 World Junior champion Zulfadli Zulkiffli put up a belligerent resistance but was undermined by aggressive shots from second seed Chou Tien Chen of Taiwan before losing the men’s second round match 21-17, 12-21, 12-21 in 66 minutes.
Malaysia’s men’s singles backup player Soong Joo Ven has also bowed out after defeat in three sets by Taiwanese Wang Tzu Wei, losing 19-21, 21-19, 13-21 in 63 minutes.
No. 1 women’s singles from Malaysia Tee Jing Yi fought hard on Wednesday, but Pai Yu Po of Taiwan proved too strong as she knocked off the Malaysian 15-21, 21-18, 21-10 in 45 minutes.
After several disappointing outcomes in January and February, Vivian Hoo Kah Mun/Woon Khe Wei began their quest for the Swiss Open title by dismissing scratch pair Nadia Fankhauser/Sannatasah Saniru (Switzerland/Malaysia) 21-11, 21-11 in their opening match. Hoo/Woon will play Heather Olver/Lauren Smith of England on Thursday.
All-England 2016 men’s doubles semi-finalists Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong were barely troubled as they cruised into the second round at Swiss Open late Wednesday with a 21-6, 21-14 straight sets win over Mathias Bonny/Christian Kirchmayr of Switzerland.
Meanwhile, former World No. 1 pair Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong were in ruthless form as they surged through to the men’s doubles second round by defeating Bastian Kersaudy/Gaetan Mittelheisser of France 21-17, 21-8 in their opening match.
Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong will play Mathias Christiansen/David Daugaard of Denmark next while Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong will clash with Thailand pair Puavaranukroh Dechapol/Kedren Kittinupong for a place in the quarter-finals.
Malaysia did not send any mixed doubles pairs to the Swiss Open that offers total prize money of US$120,000 (RM499,716).