By : K.M. Boopathy
HAFIZ Hashim survived a tricky first round encounter against brother Roslin, while women's doubles Wong Pei Tty-Chin Eei Hui toppled World No 1 pair Zhang Yawen-Wei Yili of China in the Denmark Open in Odense yesterday.
Hafiz, who desperately needs a good run to check his rut, beat elder brother Rosin 22-20, 21-15 in 40 minutes to set up a second round encounter with Denmark's Joachim Persson.
Hafiz was tipped to meet India's unpredictable star Anup Sridhar, who beat the Malaysian in the second round of the World Championships in August, but Persson upset the Indian player 21-18, 21-13.
However, it was the performance of Pei Tty-Eei Hui, ranked No 10 in the world, which had the crowd gasping as the unseeded Malaysians secured a deserving 22-20, 14-21, 21-15 victory over Yawen-Yili in 54 minutes.
It was Pei Tty-Eei Hui's first win over a pair ranked in the world's top three and their first over a pair from China, and the win comes at a crucial period as they have been struggling with their form of late.
The Malaysians will next meet ither Jwala Gupta-Shruti Kurian of India or Indonesian pair Meiliana Jauhari-Shendy Puspa Irawati today.
However, Pei Tty-Eei Hui's fine performance failed to have a positive effect on several of their compatriots who made early exits.
However, Choong Tan Fook-Lee Wan Wah suffered a shock when they were toppled 23-21, 13-21, 21-17 by United States' Bob Malaythong-Howard Bach in the men's doubles.
World No 1 Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong were involved in another tricky match against Singapore's Hendri Kurniawan Saputra-Hendra Wijaya late last night.
In the men's singles, Japan's Shoji Sato outplayed Lee Tsuen Seng 21-17, 21-14 while Andrew Smith of England beat Sairul Amar Ayub 19-21, 21-18, 21-15.
Wong Mew Choo also ended her campaign early when she crashed 21-14, 21-17 to Jiang Yanjiao of China.
Malaysia's best bet in the singles and second seed, Lee Chong Wei was scheduled to play his first round match against Peter Mikkelsen of Denmark late yesterday.
Yeoh Kay Bin was also involved in a late match yesterday against another Dane, Kenneth Jonassen.