Malaysia have one foot in the Thomas Cup quarter-finals after the national team made the perfect start in this prestigious event by demolishing Hong Kong 5-0 in their Group D opener on Saturday.

Lee Zii Jia opened the door to the whitewash with a clinical 21-18, 21-18 victory over Lee Cheuk Yiu in the first singles.

The world number 10 was on top throughout the 45-minute victory, and provided one of the highlight reels of the day in the second game.

Zii Jia showcased some fine defending, first pulling out a wicked round-the-back return, then continued to repel Cheuk’s Yiu sustained smashes before diving full stretch to make a cross court save that left his opponent sliding across the court.

Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik made it 2-0 in the first doubles with a fairly comfortable 21-16, 21-12 success over Law Cheuk Kim-Yeung Shing Choi.

Soh later paid tribute to the pair’s former coach Flandy Limpele, who is now coach of the Hong Kong doubles team.

“He took us to the Olympics and this was a special meeting. We appreciate his contributions and wish him well,” he said.

Leong Jun Hao confirmed the outright victory for Malaysia after coming from a game down to beat Angus Ng Ka Long 17-21, 21-12, 21-15.

Leong deserved credit for his fighting spirit to turn this match on its head, with the second singles shuttler taking more risk in his attacks and saw them pay off handsomely, as Ng’s late comeback wilted away.

Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin duly made it 4-0 with a straight game 21-19, 21-18 win over scratch pairing Tang Chun Man-Reginald Lee, but not before the Asian silver medalists were given a stern test by their opponents.

Tang-Lee are mixed doubles shuttlers who are ranked in the top-20 with their respective partners, but were paired together in hopes of using their respective skill-set to nick a point against Goh-Izzuddin.

But the Malaysians did enough to pave the way for Justin Hoh to seal the perfect score in the third singles.

The young Malaysian answered that call with a 21-17, 19-21, 21-17 victory over Chan Yin Chak, showing an impressive array of smashes and sublime net kills to cap off a dream start for Malaysia.

Malaysia will get to confirm their last eight passage when they face Algeria on Sunday.