KUALA LUMPUR – National men’s singles ace Lee Zii Jia (picture) crashed out of the Denmark Open quarter-finals after narrowly losing to Olympic champion Viktor Axelsen at the Odense Sports Park late last night.
Axelsen, the world’s number two shuttler, ousted Zii Jia 21-19, 21-19 in 39 minutes to book a slot in the semi-finals against Lee Cheuk Yiu of Hong Kong, according to the bwf.tournamentsoftware.com portal.
The victory was sweet revenge on home ground for Axelsen, who was upset by Zii Jia at the All England 2021 final in March.
With Zii Jia’s elimination, men’s doubles pair Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin Rumsani are the only Malaysians who qualified for the semi-finals of the tournament.
Sze-Fei-Nur Izzuddin continued their fine run by beating Indonesians Fajar Alfian-Muhammad Rian Ardianto in the quarter-finals and will take on Denmark’s Kim Astrup-Anders Skaarup Rasmussen tonight. Fajar Alfian-Muhammad Rian were part of the triumphant Indonesian Thomas Cup squad last week.
The Malaysians have lost all their three previous meetings with the Danish pair.
“The last time we met at the Swiss (Open) we lost. We don’t want to comment too much; we will do our best and prove that we can, Insya Allah (God willing),” said Nur Izzuddin in a video shared with local reporters.