Malaysian top mixed pair Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying kept Malaysia’s hopes in the ongoing Perodua Malaysia Masters alive, storming into tomorrow’s semifinals after defeating Japanese pair Takuro Hoki-Wakana Nagahara 21-15, 21-18 at Axiata Arena, here today. 

It was Peng Soon-Liu Ying’s third win against the Japanese pair who almost forced a rubber game after a closely-fought match in the second set. After trailing in the early part of the second set, the Malaysians managed to put their game back in order to finish off the game in 42 minutes.

Peng Soon-Liu Ying’s will meet either China’s second seed Wang Yi Lyu-Huang Dong Pin of China or Robin Tabeling-Selena Piek of the Netherlands in tomorrow’s semifinals. 

“We did well in the first set but were a bit disorganised in the second set. There was a bit of confusion but we managed to get back into our rhythm halfway into the second set,” said Liu Ying. 

Peng Soon meanwhile admitted that the pressure to win their first title of the year in front of the home crowd is mounting. “But we are experienced enough to manage whatever expectation put upon us, especially playing in front of the home crowd,” said Peng Soon. 

In the other quarterfinal encounter, top seed Zheng Si Wei-Huang Ya Qiong proved too strong for 8thseed Goh Soon Huat-Shevon Lai who bowed out 21-11, 21-9.  

Soon Huat-Shevon were clearly no match for the Chinese world number one who were simply a class above them, winning their sixth encounter over the Malaysians in just 24 minutes. 

“It was not our best performance, we made a lot of errors and the fact that the Chinese pair were very quick and consistent made our life harder. We’ve got a lot to learn from the outcome of this tournament and need to work harder,” said Shevon after the match. 

Partner Goh Soo Huat remained upbeat, saying that they will continue to work hard to improve on their speed and coverage of the court. “It’s obvious that the Chinese were superior in speed and agility. They were consistent throughout the match and we need to continue to improve on those areas,” said Soo Huat. 

In the other quarterfinals, top seed Tai Tzu Ying was a class above India’s Pusarla V. Sindhu to win 21-16, 21-16 to book a semifinal slot against 7th seed He Bing Jiao of China.

Third seed Nozomi Okuhara was sent packing by China’s 7th seed He Bin Jiao who won 21-17, 21-10 to set up a semifinal clash against top seed Tai Tzu Ying. 

Spain’s Carolina Marin was in her element, brushing aside India’s single ace Sania Nehwal 21-8, 21-7 in just 30 minutes. 

Second seed Mohamad Ahsan-Hendra Setiawan lived up to their top billings but were given stiff resistance by Taiwan’s Lee yang-Wan Chi Lin before winning 20-22, 21-18, 21-19 in 49 minutes. The Indonesian pair are down to meet China’s third seed pair Li Jun Hui-Liu Yu Chen in tomorrow’s semifinals. 

Indonesia’s women’s doubles Greysia Polli-Apriani Rahayu followed suit with a win over Korea’s Chang Ye Na-Kim Hye Rin to set up a semifinal tie against either Kim So Yeong-Kong Hee Yong (KOR) or China’s Li Wen Mei-Zheng Yu tomorrow. 

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