Lee Chong Wei outplayed Taufik Hidayat on Friday to reach the men’s singles semi-finals at the Maybank Malaysia Open presented by Proton.
The world No. 1, who is chasing a record equalling eighth title, crushed the former world and Olympic champion 21-9, 21-18 and will now meet Chen Long of China in the semi-finals.
It will give Chong Wei a chance for revenge as it was Chen Long who ended his run as the Li Ning BWF World Superseries Finals champion a month ago.
“I’m delighted to have reached the semi-finals where I will meet Chen Long. I think he is one of the strongest opponents in this tournament. He is young and very aggressive player,” said Chong Wei.
“The pressure is on my side because I’m the defending champion, and playing on the home ground. I hope I can maintain my form from Korea where I won the title.”
If Chong Wei goes on to win the title, he will equal Wong Peng Soon’s record of eight men’s titles.
Chen Long is without doubt the most improved player on the BWF circuit and even defeated Lee three times last season as he climbed up to No. 3 in the world rankings behind Chong Wei and Lin Dan.
World, Olympic and Asian Games champion Lin, who many regard as the greatest player in the history of the sport, suffered a stunning three-game reversal on Thursday when Denmark’s Jan O Jorgensen won 14-21, 21-15, 21-15.
The Dane, who was nearly forced to give up the game in October due to heart ailment, however, could not continue his good form on Friday as he was knocked out by 2010 world champion Chen Jin, who won 21-16, 20-22, 21-6.