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Xia Out of Men's Singles at China Open

Former world No.1 Xia Xuanze of China was ousted from the men's singles competition at the China Open badminton in Guangzhou on Wednesday.

The third-seeded shuttler lost to countryman Chen Jin, world junior champion, in straight sets 15-12, 15-5.

Both of them were not amazed to see the result while 18-year-old Chen was apparently happy but not satisfied with his performance.

"I didn't give my best on court but Xia played worse," Chen said, "That's why I won the game."

"He did quite well at the beginning of the first set, but seemed short of strength after he finally lost it and he almost gave up in the second. So my key to the victory is patience.

"We're good friends and know each other very well, which is another reason that I could beat him," Chen said.

Xia took an early lead in the first set but finally surrendered after Chen strengthened defense.

"I was too eager to take the first set and got exhausted too early," Xia said.

But He seemed not disappointed and even has the mood to joke.

"I'm old and there would be no room for me in the team soon," the 26-year-old said.

The last time they met was the Chinese National Championships in September, where Xia also lost to Chen. In 2004, Chen has taken Poland Open and France Open titles in addition to his world junior champion.

Chen will next clash with sixteenth-seeded Agus Hariyanto from Chinese Hong Kong.

Traditional power Malaysia has all its six shuttlers ousted from the men's singles as its top shuttler Wong Choong-Hann was stopped at the second round. The first round has seen the exits of five Malaysian shuttlers including Malaysia Open champion Lee Chong-Wei.

Wong lost to Chinese Li Yu 13-15, 15-2, and 15-0 as he quit the third set after losing the second, citing a bad cold.

"I felt bad even before I came to China, and has begun to cough. I took medicine but apparently it doesn't work well," Wong said.

In other men's single matches, current world No. 1 Lin Dan eased through South Korean Ahn Hyun-Suk 15-6, 15-3 and Olympic champion Taufik Hidayat downed Liao Sheng-Shjun from Chinese Taipei 15-7, 15-7.

The top eight seeded competitors except Xia all moved into the third round, including Dane Peter Gade and Kenneth Jonassen, Chinese Bao Chunlai and Chen Hong and Sony Dwi Kuncoro of Indonesia.

(Xinhua News Agency November 11, 2004)

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