Zakki Hakim, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

Indonesian youngster Simon Santoso and Rony Agustinus failed to overcome their opponents on Thursday, leaving Sony Dwi Kuncoro and Taufik Hidayat the host team's only hopes in the men's singles at the 2003 JVC Asia Badminton Championships.

At the Bung Karno Indoor Tennis Stadium, Simon, 18, started impressively, crushing Malaysian Lee Tsuen Seng 15-5 in the opening set.

But the Indonesian rising star crumbled in the remainder of the game, ending with a 7-15, 12-15 loss.

"I was too eager to win the match. That made me reckless," Simon told reporters after his match.

It was their second meeting after Malaysia Open last month, where Simon was also defeated by the 24-year-old Lee.

"Lee has been improving, especially in his composure," Simon said.

Despite his early defeat, Simon said he was still guaranteed a place in the national team for the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Vietnam.

As for Rony, after losing in a tight first set, he fought back to even the score, but then fell back, and was overcome in the decisive set by Agus Haryanto of Hong Kong, who scraped up a 12-15, 15-5, 5-15 victory.

It was the latest sour ending in as many tournaments following Rony's disappointing performance at the Indonesia Open and Denmark Open.

While Simon and Rony will now join the spectators in the stands, defending champion Sony Dwi Kuncoro and Taufiq Hidayat carried their way through to the quarterfinals with easy wins over little-known opponents.

Sony crushed Liao Sheng Shiun of Chinese Taipei 15-8, 15-4, while Taufiq outclassed Japanese Shinkai Yusuke 15-6, 15-4.

It is in Friday's quarterfinals that the Indonesians are likely to face strong opposition from Korean players. World number 8 Sony will take on Jang Young-soo, who ranks 120, and world number 14 Taufiq faces Park Sung-hwan, who ranks 32.

In the women's singles, Maria Kristin, Silvi Antarini and Fransisca advanced to the quarterfinals, but Siti Mahiroh and Firdasari Andrianti fell to the wayside.

Firdasari went down 11-7, 5-11, 8-11 to Chinese Zeng Yagiong, and Siti Mahiroh surrendered to Ling Wang Ting of Hong Kong 8-11, 2-11.

Maria, Indonesia's number one player, will challenge fourth-ranked Wang Chen of Hong Kong, while Silvi is paired against 14th-ranked Korean Jun Jae-youn.

In the men's doubles, favorites Flandy Limpele/Eng Hian led Indonesia into the next round, followed by Markis Kido/Hendra Setiawan and Luluk Hadiyanto/Alven Yulianto.

Flandy/Eng, fresh from their success in winning the German Open, overpowered Malaysian pair Tan Bin Shen/Ong Soon Hock 15-5, 15-12.

In the women's doubles, two Indonesian pairs lost out on a default after they showed up late. Meanwhile, Greysia Polii/Rani Mundiasti and Jo Novita/Lita Nurlita advanced to the quarterfinals after defeating Chinese Zeng Yagiong/Dai Yun and Vietnamese Ha Thi Kim Nhan/Nguyen Thi Thanh Tam, respectively.