# Chong Wei had a tough time to subdue Ajay Jayaram
# Iskandar on a roll with win over Angus Ng Ka Long
# V Shem-Wee Kiong shown the exit while Kien Keat-Boon Heong stay alive
Malaysia’s top men’s shuttler Datuk Lee Chong Wei will not be surprised if the men’s singles final in the USD120,000 Victor Far East Malaysia Masters Grand Prix Gold is an all Malaysian affair.
He believes there is strong possibility of this happening after he and Malaysia’s rising star Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin made the semi-finals after brushing aside their quarter-final opponents on Friday.
However it was not plain sailing for Chong Wei as he was given a tough fight by Ajay Jayaram before he could subdue the Indian 10th seed 21-16, 21-16.
Iskandar gave another heartwarming performance to defeat eighth seed Angus Ng Ka Long of Hong Kong 21-11, 21-15 in 36 minutes.
Chong Wei who is the top seed and favourite to win his first international title this year took care of India’s Ajay Jayaram with a 21-16, 21-16 win also in 36 minutes.
The former World No 1 who is now ranked No 5 was quick to admit that Ajay gave him a “tough time” on the court but he is fully focused on his semi-final match against Indonesia’s Tommy Sugiarto.
Iskandar, the national champion, even earned praise from Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) technical director Morten Frost.
“He (Iskandar) has the pace to face higher seeded players. I am not surprised with his good performance here…he has raised his game to a level where he should be,” said Frost.
“Iskandar has the pace to follow the top players. I also expect him to be in the top 25 and I am not surprised with what he has dished out so far…beating seeded players in the tournament.”
While Chong Wei will face Tommy Sugiarto for a place in Sunday’s final the other semifinal will see Iskandar take on India’s K. Srikanth.
Tommy, seeded third in Penang, defeated China’s Qiao Bin 21-6, 21-17 in 42 minutes while Srikanth, the second seed, had no problem against another Chinese Huang Yuxiang to win 21-15, 21-14 for a place in the last four.
“I must admit that I was not at my best and gave away points easily. But that is another story as I my focus to the semi-final match against Tommy. I have played him times and I have not lost to him,” said Chong Wei.
There was also delight in the mixed doubles when Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying and Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing booked their place in the last four.
The eighth seeds Peng Soon-Liu Ying defeated Indonesia’s Hafiz Faisal-Shella Devi Aulia 21-13, 21-18 while Kian-Meng-Pei Jing won 21-10, 21-15 against Japan’s Keigo Sonoda-Naoko Fukuman.
However it was the end of the road for Malaysia’s No 1 men’s doubles pair Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong when they lost their quarter-final match against Japan’s Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda. The Japanese won 22-24, 21-16, 21-16 in 58 minutes.
But independent pair Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong stayed alive with a 21-16, 20-22, 21-13 win over another Japanese pair Hiroyuki Saeki-Ryota Taohata.
Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin (Mas) beat Angus Ng Ka Long (Hkg) 21-11, 21-15
Srikanth (Ind) beat Huang Yuxiang (Chn) 21-15, 21-14
Datuk Lee Chong Wei beat Ajay Jayaram (Ind) 21-16, 21-16
Tommy Sugiarto (Ina) beat Qiao Bin (Chn) 21-6, 21-17
Gideon Markus Fernaldi-Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo (Ina) beat Lee Sheng-mu-Tsai Chia-hsin (Tpe) 15-21, 22-20, 21-13
Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong (Mas) beat Hiroyuki Saeki-Ryota Taohata (Jpn) 21-16, 20-22, 21-13
Kim Gi-jung-Kim Sa-rang (Kor) beat Vladimir Ivanov-Ivan Sozonov (Rus) 23-21, 21-19
Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda (Jpn) beat Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong (Mas) 22-24, 21-16, 21-16
Venkata Sindhu (INd) beat Lindaweni Fanetri (Ina) 21-10, 21-10
Sung Ji-hyun (Kor) beat Sayaka Sato (Jpn) 13-21, 21-18, 21-11
Yui Hashimoto (Jpn) beat Bae Yeon-ju (Kor) 13-21, 21-18, 21-11
Kirsty Gilmour (Sco) beat Busanan Ongbumrungphan (Tha) 21-19, 21-10
Misaki Matsutomo-Ayaka Takahashi (Jpn) beat Shizuka Matsuo-Mami Naito (Jpn) 21-18, 19-21, 21-14
Tang Yuanting-Yu Yang (Chn) beat Naoko Fukuman-Kurumi Yanao (Jpn) 24-22, 21-15
Chang Ye-na-Lee So-hee (Kor) beat Shiho Tanaka-Koharu-Yonemoto (Jpn) 21-12, 17-21, 21-12
Du Yue-Li Yinhui (Chn) beat Yuki Fukushima-Sayaka Hirota (Jpn) 21-16, 21-17
Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing (Mas) beat Keigo Sonoda-Naoko Fukuman (Jpn) 21-10, 21-5
Zheng Siwei-Li Yinhui (Chn) beat Shin Baek-choel-Chae Yoo-jung (Kor) 21-17, 16-21, 21-19