Taipei: The Malaysian squad got off to a strong start on Wednesday when No. 4 seed Lee Zii Jia easily beat local shuttler Hsueh Hsuan Yi 21-7, 21-17 to set up second round encounter with Shesar Hiren Rhustavito of Indonesia.
“I don’t want to think too much about winning or losing even if I am the defending champion. It’s important for me to focus on every match and hopefully I can maintain my performance in the second round,” said Lee. Lee defeated World No. 2 Chou Tien Chen in last year’s Chinese Taipei semi-final.
In addition to Lee, World No. 78 Cheam June Wei also produced a strong display to down World No. 51 Ihsan Maulana Mustofa of Indonesia 21-19, 21-15. Cheam will take on Taiwanese shuttler Lin Yu Hsien in the second round.
Meanwhile, Daren Liew enjoyed a strong opener as he overcame Japanese player Yu Igarashi 21-18, 21-18 and will meet Thomas Rouxel from France in the next round. Rouxel, on the other hand, sent Malaysia’s national champion Soong Joo Ven packing by winning his first round match 23-21, 21-12.
In men’s doubles, Aaron Chia/Soh Wooi Yik looked in control as they saw off Lin Shang Kai/Tseng Min Hao of Taiwan 21-13, 21-12. The pair will battle Wahyu Nayaka Arya Pangkaryanira/Ade Yusuf Santoso of Indonesia for a place in the quarter-finals.
Alongside Chia/Soh, No. 4 seeds Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong will square off against Danny Bawa Chrisnanta/Loh Kean Hean of Singapore while a tough test awaits Chooi Kah Ming/Low Juan Shen in the second round as they will take on No. 2 seeds Lee Yang/Wang Chi-Lin of Taiwan on Thursday.