Top-seeded Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng of China was eliminated from the badminton men's doubles quarterfinals here on Thursday at the 15th Doha Asian Games.
Few minutes later, Cai and Fu's teammates Guo Zhendong and Zheng Bo failed to hold back the attack from Indonesian fifth- seeded Luluk Hadiyanto/Alvent Yulianto Chandra in a three-set combat.
Cai and Fu arrived in Doha as hot favorites, since they were ranked world number one and newly crowned world champion in Madrid.
After knocking off Thai shuttlers Sudket Prapakamol and Phattapol Ngensrisuk 21-9, 23-21 this morning, the Chinese pair set up a battle against Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong of Malaysia.
In the first ever encounter between the two pairs, Cai and Fu was in the disadvantageous position all along and could not block off powerful smashes and rapid shots from their rivals.
After 26 minutes, Cai and Fu lost 21-9 and 21-19. The depressed Chinese pair refused any interview, walking towards the athletes passage in low spirits.
A high-spirited Koo Kien Keat said, "Tan and I paired up just one month ago. If I came to Doha with my old partner, I could play more confidently."
On the court next to Cai and Fu's battlefield, Guo Zhendong and Zheng Bo winning the first set 21-15 in rousing style. However, their rivals fought back vehemently to turn the table 21-18 and 21- 14.
"We were passive during the game," said Zheng, "We did poorly in switching from attack to defence."
The 23-year-old Zheng hoped that he could perform better in the mixed doubles semifinals on Friday. He paired up with two-time mixed doubles Olympic champion Gao Ling to knock off world number one Nova Widianto and Liliyana from Indonesia on Thursday.