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Thursday, March 13, 2008

Swiss Open Round 2 Predictions

After a tumultuous day 1, it remains to be seen whether the seeds can hold their ground against a vastly different playing field.

Anthony Clark/Donna Kellog vs. Gail Emms/Nathan Robertson
It is unfortunate that mixed doubles players of such a high calibre have to face off in such early rounds. Both are English players, with Gail and Nathan being the more highly regarded. Thus, Gail and Nathan would prevail in 3 sets.

Yip Pui Yin vs. Zhu Lin
Yip managed to upset world number 1 Xie Xingfang in last week's All England, and now faces another credible and powerful opponent in her way. The reigning world champion Zhu Lin is certainly a credible force to be reckoned with. Although the hard smashing Yip appears to be in superb form, I still think Zhu will be too good for her. Zhu in 3 sets.

Wong Mew Choo vs. Zhou Mi
Very tricky for Mew Choo. Although rated lower, ex world number 1 Zhou Mi seems to be surging back into form. It will be a very tricky second round match for both players. However, I think Malaysian golden girl Wong Mew Choo can carve up a win in 3 sets to potentially face Xie Xingfang in the Quarterfinals.

Choong Tan Fook/Lee Wan Wah vs. Jonas Rasmussen/Lars Paaske
When they last met, in the Quarterfinals of the Malaysian Open, Jonas and Lars managed to steal a three set win off the Malaysian veterans on route to their runners up finish. Choong and Lee nearly made their third All England final, narrowly losing their Semifinal game even though they held 4 match points. However, Choong and Lee should be able to put it behind them and win in 2 sets, given that their stamina is not affected.

Taufik Hidayat vs. Anup Sridhar
Anup will be eager to claim the scalp of Taufik Hidayat for the second time. However, he is unlikely to repeat his remarkable World Championship feat. Taufik has not been impressive lately, but still has enough in him to defeat Anup. Taufik in 2 sets.

Sairul Amar Ayob vs. Wong Choong Hann
After Sairul's surprising but pleasing upset against World Championship Runner Up Sony Dwi Kuncoro yesterday, he seems perfectly in position to proceed to the Quarterfinals. Wong stole a win from Lee Tsuen Seng yesterday, coming back from a brink of defeat to progress. I haven't seen much of Sairul recently, but I think Wong should be in form after yesterday's work out and beat Sairul in 2 sets to progress to meet the victor of the Chen Yu/Lin Dan match.

Lin Dan vs. Chen Yu
Don't look at me, ask Li Yongbo.

Cai Yun/Fu Haifeng vs. Guo Zhendong/Xie Zhongbo
Ask our friend Yongbo for his predictions on this match too. He is always right. Hail Li Yongbo.

Mohd. Fairuzizuan/Mohd. Zakry vs. Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong
Indeed, this is a very interesting match up. Both pairs have not been in top form lately, and have been extremely unconvincing. While I would say Koo and Tan hold the upper hand, Fairuzizuan and Zakry could potentially spoil the world number 3's day. Hard to speculate, but the victor of this match earns the right to play either Ong Soong Hock/Tan Bin Shen or Alvent Yulianto/Luluk Hadiyanto.

Xu Huaiwen vs. Julia Wong
A suprise by Julia yesterday, but I doubt that she will be able to beat world number 7 Xu. However, she might spring a pleasant suprise, but I still think Xu will win in 2 sets.

Ong Soon Hock/Tan Bin Shen vs. Alvent Yulianto/Luluk Hadiyanto
While Alvent and Luluk have been impressive this year, Ong and Tan have been quiet. Ong and Tan will be eager to claim a seed, but I think Alvent and Luluk will be too strong. Alvent and Luluk in 3 sets.

As you can see, as more and more Malaysians make it through the first round, the more I have to type, and the less the predictions become. (My hands are tired :)). Lets break the trend by predicting the juicy Lee Chong Wei prediction.

Lee Chong Wei vs. Dicky Palyama
Dicky yesterday scored an impressive upset yesterday against Thai Boonsak Ponsana. However, what stands in the way is huge. The Lee Chong Wei is a valuable seed to knock out, and would certainly boost one's confidence. However, let us not give false hope to Dicky. Lee Chong Wei has been impressive, except for a minor hiccup against Chen Jin. Dicky's journey in Basel will end here in the hands of Lee. Quick and painless. 2 sets, to potentially meet Kenneth Jonassen next round.

See you next round!

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