KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia shocked three-time champions South Korea 3-2 in a thrilling Sudirman Cup Group 1D match in Dongguan, China Sunday night.
Men’s doubles pair Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong set Malaysia on the winning path by upsetting South Korea’s world number one pair Lee Yong Dae/Yoo Yeon Seong, 20-22, 21-14, 27-25 in an exciting three set encounter.
South Korea however, drew level when Lim Yin Fun lost tamely to Sung Ji Hyun 9-21, 7-21 in the women’s singles.
Former world number one Datuk Lee Chong Wei, 33, restored Malaysia’s advantage when he showed that he had not lost any of his touches despite an eight-month absence from competition, by beating Lee Dong Keun 21-12, 21-10.
Chong Wei who was slapped with an eight-month suspension by the Badminton World Federation for a doping offence did not disappoint Badminton Association of Malaysia’s (BAM) technical director Morten Frost Hansen who was at the court-side to witness his charge in action.
Though playing in China, Chong Wei received tremendous support from the local fans who are all the more familiar with the ace shuttler who was probably the only shuttler who had matched the prowess of Chinese shuttlers like Lin Dang and Chen Hong.
Cheers following Chong Wei’s win was however, short-lived when women’s doubles pair Vivian Hoo/Woon Khe Wei failed in their bid to clinch the winning point after going down 20-22, 9-21 to Chang Ye Na/Jung Kyung Eun.
With the tie level at 2-2, the outcome had to be decided by the mixed doubles match.
Fortunately Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying lived up to expectations by claiming the winning point by beating Kim Ha Na/Kong Sung Hyun, 23-21, 21-13.
Malaysia meet India tomorrow and a win will see Malaysia top the group and sail into the quarterfinals.
Meanwhile, Chong Wei who is also the team captain said he was satisfied with his performance.
“Though absent from competitions for seven months, I still had the tournament feeling once the match started,” he told Astro Arena when interviewed after the match.
In another match, Denmark beat England 4-1 in Group 1C. – BERNAMA