KUALA LUMPUR – National men’s singles player Zulfadli Zulkiffli played better than the other foreign competitors, but still struggled to advance to round two of the French Open badminton championship.
Zulfadli, now ranked 33rd in the world, defeated Huang Yuxiang from China in 24-22, 12-21 and 22-20, taking one hour 13 minutes, early today at the Stade Pierre de Coubertin, Paris.
In the second round today at 5.45pm local time (Malaysia is ahead of France by six hours, Zulfadli is scheduled to meet Son Wan Ho of South Korea after the sixth seeded beat Lin Yu Hsien of Taiwan in 21-19 and 21-14.
However, national second singles player Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin and national professional player Chong Wei Feng, failed to advance to the second round after losing to their opponents last night.
In addition for Malaysia, world number one player Datuk Lee Chong Wei pulled out of the French Open on Wednesday after failing to recover from a hamstring muscle injury picked up at the Denmark Open last week.
Also advancing to the second round are national mixed doubles pair Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing who will meet second seeded Praveen Jordan-Debby Susanto of Indonesia.
Kian Meng and Pei Jing had earlier beaten English pair Ben Lane-Jessica Pugh in 21-19 and 21-16 in the first round on Tuesday. – BERNAMA