Soratja, Salakjit and Poompat shine for Thailand on opening day
Tokyo — Thailand’s Soratja Chansrisukot knocked 1998 Asian Games gold medallist Kanako Yonekura of Japan 21-18, 21-19 in the first round of the women’s competition in the Japan Open badminton championships yesterday.
It was a fine display by Soratja who moved about the court quickly and showed some deft touches and fierce smashes.
Thailand’s Salakjit Polsana also won but was made to fight hard before overcoming Yip Pui-yin of hong Kong 21-17, 21-19.
In the men’s second round action, Salakjit’s brother Boonsak, seeded fifth, beat Takashi Kawauchi of japan 21-15, 21-5, while Poompat Sapkulchananart had an excellent 21-15, 9-21, 23-21 victory over Malaysia’s number nine seed Keoh Kay Bin.
Olympic champion Taufik Hidayat came through a tough three-game match to knock China’s world silver medallist Bao Chunlai out of tournament.
The encounter was on a knife-edge at 18-18 in the final game before the unseeded Indonesian rallied to win 21-12, 12-21, 21-19.
‘‘It was tough for the first match. But it was a bit unlucky for me to play such a strong opponent in my first match since my ranking has gone down,’’ said Taufik, 25.
‘‘Because, even if I had lost, it’s all right. But if I win, it gives me a bigger chance to advance further. I can concentrate on my other matches better than today.’’
Hidayat’s next opponent will be Japan’s Koichi Saeki, who beat ninth seed Ng Wei of Hong Kong and Yusuke Shinkai in his opening matches.
Meanwhile world champion and top seed Lin Dan of China eased aside Japan’s Yusuke Arita 21-11, 21-17 in his opening match.
Asian champion Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, the second seed, downed former Asian champion Soni Dwi Kuncoro of Indonesia 21-13, 21-18.
European champion Peter Gade of Denmark thrashed Takuma Ueda of Japan 21-13, 21-13.
Former Japan Open champions Muhammad Roslin Hashim of Malaysia and Ronald Susilo of Singapore also reached the third round along with Chen Hong, Roslin’s brother Muhammad Hafiz Hashim, and Simon Santoso of Indonesia.
Joint ninth seed Shoji Sato of Japan and Dicky Palyama of the Netherlands failed to clear the first hurdle.
Indonesia’s Taufik Hidayat returns a shot to third-seeded Bao Chunlai of China during their men’s singles second round match yesterday. Hidayat beat Bao 21-12, 12-21, 21-19.
Top-seeded Lin Dan of China hits a shot back to Yusuke Arita of Japan during their men’s singles second round match. Lin beat Arita 21-11, 21-17.