Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Lee Yong-dae Is Back

Hong Kong (11/10) - Korean doubles player Lee Yong-dae won in his first appearance after a two-month absence due to injury. He played with Lee Hyo-jung in mixed doubles first round. The world number one pair overcame Thailand's Sudket Prapakamol/Saralee Thungthongkam in straight sets, 23-21 and 21-13.

The 2008 Olympic gold medalists will take on Fran Kurniawan and Pia Zebadiah of Indonesia. Other Korean mixed doubles pairs, Ko Sung-hyun/Ha Jung-eun and Shin Baek-cheol/Kim Min-jung also progress to the second round. Ko Sung-hyun and Ha Jung-eun beat Koo Kien Keat/Wong Pei Tty in a tough match, 21-18, 17-21, and 21-19, while Shin Baek-cheol and Kim Min-jung easily won over Albertus Njoto/Chan Hung Yung. 21-11 and 21-15.

Lee Yong-dae, pairing with Jung Jae-sung in the men's doubles, did not need to play a first round match because their opponent, Guo Zhendong and Xu Chen, withdrew. In the second round, Yong-dae and Jae-sung will face Hirokatsu Hashimoto and Noriyasu Hirata of Japan.

Lin Dan Withdraws

Three times world champion and four times Hong Kong Open winner, Lin Dan, withdrew from Hong Kong Open due to an ankle injury. His absence will make the race of men's singles title more competitive. His place is taken by lucky qualifier Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk of Thailand. Tanongsak will play Sony Dwi Kuncoro in the first round.

Besides Lin Dan, China's number one mixed doubles pair Zheng Bo and Ma Jin, seeded 2, also withdrew, giving Henry Tam and Donna Haliday of New Zealand a free second-round berth. Men's doubles world champions, Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng, also withdrew.

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