Home favourite Lin Dan has crashed out of the Badminton Asia Championships after suffering a first-round defeat at the hands of Chinese Taipei’s Wang Tzu Wei in Wuhan today.
The sixth seed failed to capitalise on his strong start as he lost 15-21, 21-9, 21-16 at the Wuhan Sports Center Gymnasium.
Wang’s reward is a meeting with India’s Prannoy Kumar, who beat Thailand’s Kantaphon Wangcharoen 21-15, 19-21, 21-19.
Prannoy’s team-mates Srikanth Kidambi and Sai Praneeth also joined him in the second round.
Top seed Kidambi defeated Japan’s Kenta Nishimoto 13-21, 21-16, 21-16, while Praneeth overcame Thailand’s Suppanyu Avihingsanon 21-13, 11-21, 21-19.
Fifth seed Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, meanwhile, was confidence personified in his 21-17, 21-16 victory over China’s Qiao Bin.
There was also a big upset in the women’s singles with fifth seed Nozomi Okuhara of Japan losing 15-21, 21-23 to China’s Gao Fangjie.
Okuhara, who suffered a right knee injury last year, was missing her impeccable control and struggled particularly on the soft shots at the net.
"My knee is perfect but I cannot train at 100 per cent," she said.
"I could not make the adjustments I was required to, so I kept repeating my mistakes."
Gao’s unexpected victory sets up an encounter with Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medallist Saina Nehwal of India.
Nehwal powered to a 21-12, 21-9 win over Singapore’s Yeo Jia Min.
Action also continued today at the European Badminton Championships, which are being held at the Carolina Marín Sports Pavilion in Huelva.
Spain’s Carolina Marín, who the event’s venue is named after, is through to round three of the women’s singles competition after the top seed beat France’s Marie Batomene 21-15, 21-12.
Next up for Marín is Switzerland's Sabrina Jaquet following her 12-21, 21-19, 21-16 success at the expense of The Netherlands' Soraya de Visch Eijbergen.
Another home athlete, Beatriz Corrales, was the most notable casualty in the women's draw as England's Chloe Birch defeated the fifth seed 21-16, 21-19.
In the men’s singles, top seed Viktor Axelsen of Denmark overcame Czech Republic’s Adam Mendrek to book his place in the third round.
Standing between Axelsen and a place in the quarter-finals is England’s Sam Parsons, who had a walkover win against Belgium’s Maxime Moreels.
The only men's seed to suffer elimination was seventh-ranked Pablo Abian after the Spaniard lost 9-21, 18-21 to Ireland's Nhat Nguyen.
Tomorrow sees the Pan American Badminton Championships begin at the Teodoro Palacios Flores Arena in Guatemala.
More than 100 athletes will be seeking to climb atop the podium.
Brazil's Ygor Coelho and Canada's Rachel Honderich are the reigning men's and women's singles champions respectively.
Coelho beat Cuba's Osleni Guerrero to victory, while Honderich held off the challenge of compatriot Brittney Tam.
Other players likely to challenge are Canadians Michelle Li and Jason Ho-Shue, Guatemala's Kevin Cordón, Peru's Daniela Macías, and the United States' Jamie Hsu.