ALL-ENGLAND champions Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong began their World Championships campaign in impressive fashion – routing Germans Roman Spitko-Michael Fuchs in straight games in the second round last night.
The second seeded Malaysians took just 26 minutes to win the match 21-12, 21-13. They will play against Poland's Michal Logosz-Robert Mateusiak today for a place in the quarter-finals.
Kien Keat-Boon Heong, who are Malaysia's best hope for the men's doubles title, certainly showed they meant business.
The duo oozed confidence against the Germans. They faced some resistance, trailing 4-5 in the second game. But there was no stopping them once they stepped up the pace.
Said Kien Keat: “This was one of the best starts for us in a tournament we have played in so far this year. All our shots were on target.”
Boon Heong, who delighted the crowd with his thumping smashes, said that he was glad they started well but did not want to be over-confident.
“The Polish pair are playing well (they beat last year's runners-up Robert Blair-Anthony Clark of England in the second round). I remember that they beat Chan Chong Ming-Chew Choon Eng in one competition. They are certainly no easy opponents,” he said.
Veterans Choong Tan Fook-Lee Wan Wah will also need to be wary when they get down to court today. They play against Simon Mollyhus-Anders Kristiansen and could find the unseeded Danes too hot to handle.
They were beaten in three games by the Danes in the first round of the Malaysian Open in January.
Tan Fook-Wan Wah moved into the third round without having to lift their racquets. They had a first-round bye and then received a walkover from Belgians Frederic Mawet-Wouter Claes.
Tan Fook was at the stadium yesterday and saw Mollyhus-Kristiansen overcome Hong Kong's Albertus Susanto Njoto-Yohan Hadikusumo 20-22, 21-19, 21-17.
“We have yet to play a match but they have already played twice. It would have been better if we had a match against the Belgians today. Right now, we do not have enough match temperament and the first match is usually tough,” said Tan Fook, who was a semi-finalist in his partnership with Wan Wah in Seville in 2001.
The KLRC-BAM combination of Chan Peng Soon-Haw Chiou Hwee emerged as the surprise Malaysian survivors in the mixed doubles. The world championship debutants fought for 46 minutes to eliminate 15th seeds Ingo Kindervater-Katrin Piotrowski of Germany 21-14, 17-21, 22-20.
Asian Junior champions Tan Wee Kiong-Woon Khe Wei bowed out tamely, losing 11-21, 15-21 to last year's runners-up Anthony Clark-Donna Kellogg of England while Tan Bin Shen-Ooi Yu Hang were beaten 11-21, 13-21 by Muhammed Rijal-Greysia Polii of Indonesia.
The 20-year-old Chiou Hwee said that they were quite nervous at the start even though they felt that they could beat the Germans.
“We beat them in straight games in the German Open early this year and they gave us a good fight then. Beating them here is a bonus because we never expect to make it to the third round,” she said.
The end of the road is in sight for Chiou Hwee-Peng Soon today. They play against Chinese top seeds Zheng Bo-Gao Ling.
One Malaysian pair is also left standing in the women's doubles competition. National number one Chin Eei Hui-Wong Pei Tty, who had a first-round bye, started their campaign with an easy 21-9, 21-7 win over Bulgaria's Maya Dobreva-Atanaska Spasova.
It was all over for Fong Chew Yen-Mooi Hing Yau and KLRC Bhd's Lim Pek Siah-Joanne Quay.