French Open: Shocking early exit for Zii Jia


KUALA LUMPUR – National men’s singles ace, Lee Zii Jia (picture) suffered a huge blow as he was knocked out early by the unseeded Loh Kean Yew of Singapore at the French Open 2021 yesterday.

The world number 40 Kean Yew thumped seventh-seeded Zii Jia in straight sets, 24-22, 21-14, in the first round match that lasted 39 minutes in Stade Pierre de Coubertin, Paris.

The shocking defeat somehow indicated that the All England 2021 champion was probably still struggling to rediscover his fine form after he went down 19-21, 19-21 to the Olympic gold medallist, Victor Axelsen, in the last eight of Denmark Open 2021 last week.

In the men’s doubles category, Tokyo Olympics bronze medallist, Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik strolled into the next stage as they trounced the new professional duo, Goh V Shem-Low Juan Shen, 25-23, 21-12.

In the second round, Aaron-Wooi Yik will lock horns against Supak Jomkoh-Kittinupong Kedren of Thailand or home pair, Lucas Corvee-Ronan Labar, as both pairs will be playing later today.

Meanwhile, national women’s doubles pair, Lee Meng Yean-Yap Cheng Wen emerged victorious against the Ukrainian pair, Mariia Stoliarenko-Yelyzaveta Zharka, 21-12, 21-17, to book a tie against the winner of another home duo, Margot Lambert-Anne Tran or sixth-seeded Chloe Birch-Lauren Smith of England.

Onto the mixed doubles category, the second-seed duo from Indonesia, Praveen Jordan-Melati Daeva Oktavianti managed to escape a scare as they emerged victorious in a tight battle against Malaysian pair, Chen Tang Jie-Peck Yen Wei, 22-20, 21-19.