BY RAJES PAUL KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia booked their place in the Thomas Cup Finals in Jakarta when they beat Hong Kong 4-1 in their final Group B tie of the Asian Zone qualifying tournament at the Kuala Lumpur Badminton Stadium yesterday. And they sealed victory in the first three singles. Fears that the men's singles players could concede points to Hong Kong proved unfounded as world number four Wong Choong Hann set the ball rolling by beating Ng Wei yet again. Roslin Hashim delivered the next point, beating Agus Hariyanto. Young debutant Lee Chong Wei then turned hero, overcoming his nerves to win the match that had been most at risk. He beat Wiratama Yohan Hadikusumo – younger brother of Indonesian Olympic champion Alan Budi Kusuma – in three games, 15-10, 13-15, 15-4, in 70 minutes. In tomorrow’s semi-finals, Malaysia will face South Korea, who topped Group A after beating India 5-0. China, from Group D and Japan from Group C are the other teams in the semi-finals. The 22-year-old Chong Wei sounded confident afterwards. “I could have won the match in straight games. I was leading 11-7 (in the second) but was in rush to win it. I threw away points with simple mistakes. Yohan took advantage,” he said. WINNING STYLES: Roslin Hashim acknowledges the cheers after his victory over Agus Hariyanto while Lee Chong Wei clenches his fist after clinching the winning point by beating Wiratama Yohan Hadikusumo in the third singles. - STARpic by S.S. Kanesan “But, certainly, playing in this kind of environment is very different. There was a huge crowd, the sound was deafening and there was a lot of pressure. But I am glad I was able to pull it off. This is a valuable experience for me and I hope to play better and better,” he added. National singles chief coach Misbun Sidek was delighted with the performances of the players. “Choong Hann certainly gave a good display to boost the team's confidence. Roslin was able to rise to the occasion. And for Chong Wei, he has lived up to my expectation. I hope this will be a good start for him,” said Misbun. Choong Hann drew first blood for Malaysia with a superb performance, racing to seven points in a row, much to the delight of the packed 2,000-capacity stadium. But the young Ng Wei recovered to level at 9-9. “That was the most crucial time for me. He was gaining confidence and I had to break his rhythm. Fortunately, I got back on track,” said the 27-year-old Choong Hann, who won it 15-9, 15-3. Roslin was on fire, too, in his 15-12, 15-3 triumph over Agus. “I knew it would be tough. I took the lead at 13-7 but he was not giving up easily. But I managed to hang on. The second was much easier. This is certainly a good start for our team,” said Roslin. The first of the dead doubles turned out to be surprisingly competitive. After winning the first game at 15-8, Choong Tan Fook and Lee Wan Wah were in for a surprise as Liu Kwok Wa-Albertus Susanto Nyoto fought back to win with identical 15-13, 15-13 victories in the next two games. Hong Kong conceded a walkover in the second doubles. Misbun is now looking to the semi-finals. “Today, we have reached our main target, that is to qualify for the Finals. Now, we have to get ready for the tie against South Korea in the semi-finals. I do not want the team to take it easy as we plan to give the Koreans a tough time. “It will not be easy but if our boys continue with this kind of performances, we can expect more good news,” he said.