It was only the year’s fourth defeat suffered by the world’s best pair, and incidentally their second in a row to their compatriots. Jiang and Wei had beaten Zheng and Huang in the final of the Badminton Asia Championships in April.
The Chinese take on third seed Yuta Watanabe/Arisa Higashino, while the other semifinal will see Feng Yan Zhe/Huang Dong Ping against Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Sapsiree Taerattanachai.
In men’s singles, top seed Kodai Naraoka shot past Lee Cheuk Yiu in straight games, to set up a mouthwatering clash against the all-out attack of Loh Kean Yew. Singapore’s Loh edged Ng Tze Yong, 22-20 21-19.
The other two semifinalists, Shi Yu Qi and Anders Antonsen, had to work hard to stay in the draw. Shi prevailed over compatriot Lu Guang Zu, while Antonsen outplayed Kenta Nishimoto, both matches finishing on the identical score of 21-18.
Thailand Open champions Kim So Yeong/Kong Hee Yong were the lone Koreans left in the women’s doubles draw after their compatriots Baek Ha Na/Lee So Hee fell in straight games to Mayu Matsumoto/Wakana Nagahara. Kim/Kong will have a chance to exact their revenge when they take on the Japanese fifth seeds in the semifinals.
The ‘Big Four’ of women’s singles – Akane Yamaguchi, An Se Young, Chen Yu Fei and Tai Tzu Ying – booked their spots in the semifinals. Of the four, Chen had the most trouble, surviving match point against compatriot Wang Zhi Yi in the second game.
Two in-form men’s doubles pairs face off in the semifinals – Indonesia Open winners Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty against Thailand Open champions Liang Wei Keng/Wang Chang. The Indians haven’t beaten the Chinese in their two previous encounters, but both were close three-game matches.