Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing played the match of their lives to stun All England runners-up, Yuta Watanabe-Arisa Higashino to march on to the second round of the mixed doubles of the Celcom Axiata Malaysian Open 2019 at the Axiata Arena, Bukit Jalil.
Not given a ghost of a chance, the world No. 37 displayed an all-out attacking game with the towering Kian Meng providing good cover at the back, upsetting the world No. 3, 21-16, 21-15 in the first round today.
Having met them two years ago, when the Japanese pair were still in their infancy, this win feels even better for Pei Jing as they are meeting them as a top ranked pair.
“This is our first win for 2019. I feel that in our game today, we have done our best which led to our win.
“We last met them two years ago but at that time they were at the beginning of their careers. After that, they emerged All England champions in 2018, and we were so excited to meet them today to see how far their game has progressed.
“I am so surprised by our win in straight sets today,” she added.
National No. 4, Kian Meng-Pei Jin will later meet Pranaav Jerry Chopra-Reddy N Sikki from India on Thursday after overcoming Irish pair, Chloe Magee-Sam Magee.
In the other matches, women’s doubles, national No. 2, Vivian Hoo-Yap Cheng Wen lost to Chayanit Chaladchalam-Phataimas Muenwong from Thailand, 20-22, 21-16, 19-21.
Soniia Cheah put on a brave fight but found Japanese world No. 4, Akane Yamaguchi too hot to handle, losing 16-21, 17-21.
In tomorrow’s action, mixed doubles pair, Goh Soon Huat-Shevon Lai Jemie will want to continue the good form from their All England semifinal feats, when they take on Alfian Eko Prasetya-Marsheilla Gischa Islami from Indonesia in the first round.
All England runners-up, Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik will meet Rio Olympics bronze medallists, Marcus Ellis-Chris Langridge from England while their teammates, Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi will be up against Kittinupong Kedren-Dechapol Puavaranakroh.
In the absence of Datuk Lee Chong Wei, Malaysia’s hope in the men’s singles, Lee Zii Jia will take on Suppanyu Avihingsanon from Thailand while national women’s No. 1, Goh Jin Wei opens her campaign with a first round match up with Nitchaon Jindapol from Thailand.
Runners up at the recent Indian Open, Chow Mei Kuan-Lee Meng Yean have a huge task ahead of them as they will meet eighth seeds from Thailand, Jongkholphan Kititharakul-Rawinda Prajongjai.
Results Of Malaysians In Action (First Round)
WD Chayanit Chaladchalam-Phataimas Muenwong (Thailand) Won Vivian Hoo- Yap Cheng Wen 22-20 16-21 21-19
MD Chooi Kah Ming- Low Juan Shen Won He Jiting- Tan Qiang (China) 21-18 24-22
MS Kantaphon Wangcharoen (Thailand) Won Liew Daren 21-10 21-15
WS Akane Yamaguchi (Japan) Won Soniia Cheah 21-16 21-17
XD Tan Kian Meng- Lai Pei Jing Won Yuta Watanabe- Arisa Higashino (Japan) 21-16 21-15
XD Marcus Ellis- Lauren Smith (England) Won Chen Tang Jie- Peck Yen Wei 21-15, 21-13
XD Chan Peng Soon- Goh Liu Ying Won Kohei Gondo- Ayane Kurihara (Japan) 21-13 21-19
MD Goh V Shem- Tan Wee Kiong Won Tinn Isriyanet Vs Kittisak Namdash (Thailand) 21-14 21-18
MD Liu Cheng- Zhang Nan (China) Won Mohamad Arif Ab Latif Arif- Nur Mohd Azriyn Ayub Azriyn 21-18 15-21 21-14