Chinese Taipei Open 2018: Ajay Jayaram loses in the quarter-finals
The Indian challenge ended on Friday as Ajay Jayaram was knocked out in the quarter-finals of the Super 300 tournament, the Chinese Taipei Open 2018. The Indian lost the match in two straight games without being able to give much of a fight. With this loss, all the Indian shuttlers were knocked out.
Ajay Jayaram took on Malaysian Lee Zii Jia in the quarter-finals. It was a great performance by the Malaysian player who had to fight for just 28 minutes to win the match. Lee Zii Jia dominated the first game right from the word go, winning the first game 21-16. The second game continued to see more aggressive play by Lee, and he completed the job by winning it 21-9 to move into the semi-finals.
Jayaram, ranked 58th in the world, did not perform according to the expectations. In this match, a 67-shot rally was played between the two players and was won by the Malaysian. The other Indian players could not win the first round while Sourabh Verma reached second round.
Ajay Jayaram won against Denmark's Kim Bruun in the second round 21-10, 22-20 before losing in Friday’s quarter-finals. The Malaysian player Lee was ranked 60th. The two players met once before, which was won by Lee.
It was a disappointing performance by Jayaram, who looked out of sorts and could not play his natural game. Now, with the European swing starting, which includes the Denmark Open and the French Open, PV Sindhu, Saina Nehwal and other top Indians will be back in action and hope to win titles for India.
Sindhu is currently in the 5th position in the race to BWF World Tour Finals and is a strong candidate to qualify in the top-8 category. It will be interesting to see if any other top Indian shuttlers can succeed.