INDONESIA OPEN QF –Chan/Goh oust world #1s

Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying finished off quarter-finals day with an upset of mixed doubles world #1 Wang Yilyu / Huang Dongping. Story: Naomi Indartiningrum, Badzine Correspondent live […]

Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying finished off quarter-finals day with an upset of mixed doubles world #1 Wang Yilyu / Huang Dongping.

Story: Naomi Indartiningrum, Badzine Correspondent live in Jakarta
Photos: Yves Lacroix / Badmintonphoto (live)

Malaysian mixed doubles pair, Chan Peng Soon / Goh Liu Ying (pictured) managed to ensure their ticket to the semi-finals 2018.  The Olympic silver medallists are still in comeback mode but put in a stunning performance to stop China’s new world #1 pair Wang Yilyu / Huang Dongping.

It was late in the day but both pairs perform a stunning first game.  The game remained tight throughout but Chan/Goh managed to secure the first game 21-19.

In the second, the game went with a high tension.  At interval, the Malaysians managed to take an 11-6 lead of their opponent.  With the high spirits, the Malaysian pair managed to win the game with the final score 21-14.

“This is the second time we met them,” said Goh Liu Ying after the match.  “I am quite satisfied with the match today but in the second game I made many mistakes by myself.  I need to improve on that for next match.

“The competition right now is very tough,” added Chan.  “Even just entering the quarter-final, we knew we would probability have to meet tough opponents.  Especially for tomorrow our opponents will be even stronger but we will prepare as well as possible for the semi-finals.”

With this victory, the Malaysian pair will challenge another Chinese pair, Malaysia Open winners Zheng Siwei / Huang Yaqiong in the semi-finals tomorrow.  On the other half of the draw, Indonesian mixed doubles, Tontowi Ahmad / Liliyana Natsir will face their teammates, Hafiz Faizal / Gloria Emanuelle Widjaja for a final ticket on Sunday.  With the loss, Wang/Huang have conceded their world #1 spot, which will go to either Zheng/Hwang or revert to Ahmad/Natsir, once this event’s results are added in.

Two former world #1s down

Long before the current mixed doubles world #1 pair exited, women’s singles lost two former holders of that distinction.  Competing at the same time as home players, Akane Yamaguchi faced some difficulties because of the noise of the Indonesian supporters.  She had to admit defeat to her opponent Chen Yufei (pictured left), who dominated their second game 21-8.

The second seeded actually led the way in the first game.  Unfortunately, after the interval, Yamaguchi just lost focus due to the noise of home supporters.

“This defeat is not a big thing for me because it’s not possible if we always win,” said Yamaguchi.   “I do not feel exhausted, but today I could not focus on the court because the host supporters are very noisy, making it hard for me to focus on the game this time.”

As for Chen Yufei, this victory was very unexpected because in their previous meetings, she only had one victory against the Japanese: “I think Yamaguchi is a very strong opponent.  I lost many times against her.  Today I was just luckier because she was not playing well.  I’m happy to win this match.  It’s a good achievement for me,” Chen said.

On Saturday, Chen Yufei will challenge Korea’s one and only representative on semi-finals day, Sung Ji Hyun (pictured right).  Sung managed to stop Ratchanok Intanon (pictured below) in two decisive games of 21-12.

The world #10 had no trouble against this Thai representative.  From the beginning of each game, Sung was always far ahead of her opponent.  She even admitted that she did not expect the match to be as easy as this because their head-to-head record is very tight, just 9-8 in Sung’s favour.

“Intanon is a player who is quite difficult to beat, it just seems that today she made many mistakes that are very good for me,” said Sung.  “In addition I also played more confidently today.

“Indeed, many times I have almost become champion.  Most of the time, I only manage to finish at 2nd, 3rd or 4th.  I never felt it was a jinx.  I just feel that I need to try harder to get the title.  This time I will prepare myself better.  Who knows?  Last year I became runner-up, this year maybe I can be champion,” she added.

With this victory, Sung Ji Hyun became the only South Korean representative remaining in the Indonesia Open 2018 event.  Denmark Open champions Lee/Shin went down in straight games to World Champions Chen/Jia.

Click here for complete quarter-final results

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Naomi Indartiningrum

About Naomi Indartiningrum

Naomi began as a Badzine Correspondent in 2015, while still a Business Management student living in Jakarta. A badminton enthusiast since 2007, she mostly spends her spare time writing about local badminton events and also maintaining one of largest badminton twitter accounts in Indonesia.