Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik’s failure to convert three match points in the deciding game cost them a place in the French Open final as the Malaysians succumbed to an agonising 21-14, 10-21, 22-24 defeat against Ko Sung-Hyun-Shin Baek-cheol.
The 56-minute contest was an absorbing one, with all four shuttlers displaying speed, technique, attacking aggression and sublime defence of the highest quality in a bid to reach the final of this Super 750 event.
But Chia-Soh, who led 18-14 in the third game, would be left kicking themselves for not being able to put this game to bed against the former world champions after holding match points at 20-19, 21-20 and 22-21.
Their exit marked a second consecutive semi-finals defeat for a national men’s doubles pair in a week, after Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin also went down fighting against Kim Astrup-Anders Rasmussen at the Denmark Open last week.
Soh was pictured looking distraught in his hotel room after the defeat, but the shuttler later posted an image of himself with the caption “Cheer Together, Suffer Together” on his social media page, which got many supportive messages including from former national shuttler Tan Boon Heong.
In other matches, world number one Kento Momota failed to make his second consecutive final after he retired in the third game against team-mate Kanta Tsuneyama.
Momota had won the opening match 26-24 and lost the second 11-21 before his retirement in the decider.
Tsuneyama goes on to face Chinese Taipei’s Chou Tien-chen for the men’s singles title.
The Japanese and South Koreans largely dominated the other events.
Lee So-hee-Shin-Seung-chan play Kim So-yeong-Kong Hee-yong in an all-South Korean women’s doubles final, while Akane Yamaguchi takes on Sayaka Takahashi in an all-Japanese women’s singles final.
Ko-Shin are up against Indonesian top seeds Marcus Fernaldi Gideon-Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo in the men’s doubles finale, while Yuta Watanabe-Arisa Higashino play Mathias Christiansen-Alexandra Boje in the mixed doubles final.