Gwangju: The 20-year-old Lee Zii Jia from Kedah, Malaysia barely broke a sweat in the Korea Masters semi-finals as his opponent Sitthikom Thammasin of Thailand was forced to retire after suffering an ankle injury when Lee was leading 4-1 in the first set.
Lee will take on No. 1 seed Son Wan Ho of Korea in the final.
Son, however, faced some fierce resistance from Lee Cheuk Yiu of Hong Kong before winning 21-19, 21-14 in another semi-final.
On the paper, Son held a 1-0 career meeting advantage over Lee prior to Sunday’s final as he defeated the Malaysian during the 2018 Asian Games individual event in Jakarta, Indonesia, last August.
“I’m excited to be able to enter the final. But there’s another important match on Sunday, and I need to remain focused,” said Lee.
“This is a good opportunity for me to win another title, I have to play my best and cannot waste it.”
“I know it’s not easy to play against Son Wan Ho because he is one of the top players of the world. However, I believe everything is possible if I give the best,” added Lee.
Meanwhile, Malaysia’s world junior champion Goh Jin Wei put on a strong fight against Li Xuerui of China, but the London Olympic champion from China was too strong for Goh, as the 18-year-old Malaysian bowing to Li 21-23, 21-10, 14-21 in 51 minutes.
Li will take on compatriot Han Yue in the final.
Meanwhile, the challenge of former national doubles player Tan Boon Heong who partnered with Kim Sa Rang from Korea also ended after losing in the semi-finals.
They went down in hands of Taiwanese pair, Po Li Wei/Wang Chi Lin 18-21, 21-12, 17-21.