SINGAPORE — Loh Kean Yew got off to a winning start at the Japan Open on Tuesday (30 August), in his first match since relinquishing his Badminton World Championships men's singles title last week.
The Singaporean shuttler, who rose to No.7 in the world rankings on Monday, defeated China's Zhao Junpeng 21-15, 21- 9 in 32 minutes at the Maruzen Intec Arena in Osaka.
Zhao, ranked world No.19, had reached the World Championships semi-finals last week, losing to eventual runner-up Kunlavut Vitidsarn of Thailand. He had upset Malaysia's top shuttler Lee Zii Jia in the round of 16.
However, Loh got off to quick starts in both games, going 9-4 up in the first and 11-5 up in the second to take control and comfortably win the round-of-32 match.
Singapore's men's doubles duo Terry Hee and Loh Kean Hean, who reached the round of 16 at the World Championships, were beaten 23-21, 21-13, 21-18 by Denmark's seventh-seeded Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen in their opening-round match.
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