Group 1A: Thai birthday boy's present to his country
Based on the playing style of Bodin Isara / Nipitphon Phuangphuapet, Hong Kong fielding Or Chin Chung / Tang Chun Man for men's doubles instead of the pair from yesterday was the right choice and they also started off with the right ploy in mind.
Or/Tang promptly forced shuttles to be lifted and then rained offensive shots from a high elevation and deep in the court. The preferred Thai onslaught were flatter exchanges requiring Phuangphuapet to move forward and his contribution was felt most in winning the first game. Isara dug a gulf between the pairs in the rubber game with his phenomenal smash to capture the opening match, 22-20, 17-21, 21-11.
The singles matches were one side affairs and offered one victory each to either side so it was Tse Ying Suet / Poon Lok Yan who kept the tie alive for Hong Kong by surviving a thoroughly energy sapping women's doubles encounter with Jongkolphan Kititharakul / Rawinda Prajongjai, 21-15, 18-21, 21-14. Tse's flair for defending from sitting on the ground and picking dropshots just in the nick of time entertained the crowd and saved many a crucial point to frustrate the Thais.
Late night fans screamed a belated happy 20th birthday to Dechapol Puavaranukroh and his gift was delivered in the form of the first game of mixed doubles owing to mis-timed smashes and drops from Reginald Lee Chun Hei on the other side of the net. Hong Kong bounced back ahead for most of the second game but four unforced errors from them at 15-15 cost them the match and tie. Taerattanachai/Puavaranukroh won 21-16, 21-16, with the most exciting rally turning up on match point.
Group 1B: Chinese Taipei trip up in men's doubles
Two giants went on court so heavy defending was a given for the women involved. Lee Chia Hsin / Wang Chi-Lin of Chinese Taipei took advantage of Ekaterina Bolotova to go ahead one point in the tie, 21-19, 21-11. Vladimir Ivanov was in dependable form and took on the role of reassurer in both mixed and men's doubles.
With the aid of Ivan Sozonov, they scored a victory for their country once again, 19-21, 21-19, 21-17, over Lee Jhe-Huei / Lee Yang. Unlike earlier in the match, the final game was made up of truncated rallies precisely because of the skill and intensity both sides were injecting. Each pair was forcing the other to produce something new.
The quality of shot making in the women's doubles was far superior from all concerned in the second game which was unfortunate for the Russian ladies who had to settle for second best at deuce after fixing their deficient skill departments, 13-21, 22-24.
Sergey Sirant bettered his performance from the previous night when he snatched the second game off world #6 Chou Tien Chen in the men's singles. Cross court forehand smashes from the Russian were lethal whereas the straight smashes were wild unforced errors. In women's singles, the world #1 Tai Tzu Ying had little need to be her usual tricky self as Evgeniya Kosetskaya was vulnerable to cross court smashes on her backhand side.