Daren Liew Exits, Lee Zii Jia Walks Through to Thailand Open Quarters

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Daren Liew injured his right ring finger during the YONEX Thailand Open second-round match. (photo: Shi Tang/Getty Images)
Daren Liew injured his right ring finger during the YONEX Thailand Open second-round match. (photo: Shi Tang/Getty Images)

Bangkok: Malaysia’s Lee Zii Jia has been given free passage to the quarter-finals of the YONEX Thailand Open after Kidambi Srikanth of India pulled out of their Thursday match citing a right calf muscle pull.

The Badminton Association of India (BAI) has issued statement below after Srikanth’s withdrawal.

“Right Calf muscle pull. So gave walkover for today’s match. Should see how he improves in the next 5 days and then will decide about his participation in the next tournament,” said BAI’s official statement on Srikanth’s walkover.

The No. 8 seed Lee will face No. 2 seed Chou Tien Chen of Taiwan on Friday.

Meanwhile, Daren Liew who created a huge upset on day one of the YONEX Thai Open, couldn’t continue his fine form at the Impact Arena by suffering his fifth career losing streak to Lee Cheuk Yiu of Hong Kong with 14-21, 17-21 in 52 minutes.

Other men’s singles players such as No. 4 seed Viktor Axelsen of Denmark and No. 5 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting of Indonesia have successfully advanced to the quarter-finals.

Axelsen beat Kantaphon Wangcharoen of Thailand 21-13, 21-17 to face Jonatan Christie of Indonesia next while Ginting overcame Kunlavut Vitidsarn of Thailand 21-16, 21-19 to meet Rasmus Gemke of Denmark.

In women’s singles, No. 1 seed Tai Tzu Ying will play Michelle Li of Canada for a place in the semi-final while No. 5 seed Carolina Marin is scheduled to next take on local shuttler Supanida Katethong.

In a post-game interview, Tai said it’s difficult for shuttlers to compete at a high-level tournament after a 10-month break.

“It’s not easy to resume playing after a long break due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I think I made less unforced errors in the second round and I am satisfied with my overall performance,” said Tai.

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