Sydney: Korea’s former World No. 1 men’s doubles pair Lee Yong Dae/Yoo Yeon Seong have qualified for the main draw of the Australian Open that started on Tuesday.
Lee/Yoo who were ranked World No. 1 for 117 weeks – right up until their retirement after winning the 2016 Korea Open Superseries, defeated local shuttlers Lukas Defolky/Raymond Tam 21-8, 21-15 in the qualifying round to seal their places in the main draw. They will play Wahyu Nayaka Arya Pangkaryanira/Ade Yusuf Santoso of Indonesia on Wednesday.
Malaysia’s Cheam June Wei and Soong Joo Wen also made the main draw of the men’s singles category by overcoming two opponents respectively in the qualifying round.
Cheam got off to strong start by eliminating Ren Pengbo of China who won the International University Sports Federation (FISU) World Badminton Championships in Kuala Lumpur last year with a 21-13, 21-12 victory, before seeing off the 2016 World Junior champion and the 2016 Asian Junior champion Sun Feixiang 21-16, 21-19 to qualify for the main draw.
Cheam will meet Wang Tzu Wei of Taiwan in the first round of main draw.
Meanwhile, Soong Joo Wen saved a set point to defeat Lin Yu Hsien of Taiwan 21-14, 22-20, before coming from a set down to tame another Taiwanese player Lu Chia Hung 21-9, 12-21, 21-17 in 56 minutes. Soong will clash with Vincent Wong Wing Ki of Hong Kong next.