Loh Kean Yew out of Taipei Open after losing to Koki Watanabe
National shuttler Loh Kean Yew crashed out in the second round of the Chinese Taipei Open yesterday, after a 22-20, 17-21, 21-16 defeat by Japan's Koki Watanabe.
The closely fought encounter at the Taipei Arena lasted 63 minutes and fittingly came down to the closing points of the final game.
World No. 28 Loh had led 12-9 before his Japanese opponent, ranked 25 places lower, clawed back to level the score at 16-16.
Watanabe, 20, then won the next five points to secure his spot in the quarter-finals.
Loh, 22, had beaten 11th ranked and tournament second seed Angus Ng 21-19, 21-12 in the first round on Wednesday.
The last time Loh and Watanabe met was in the quarter-finals of the 2015 BWF World Junior Championships in Peru, where the Singaporean fell 24-22, 21-17. Watanabe went on to claim the bronze.
Loh's teammate Yeo Jia Min is also out of the Chinese Taipei tournament.
She lost 21-19, 21-14 to second seed Michelle Li of Canada in the women's singles on Wednesday.