Six-time champion Lee Chong Wei's title defence came to an early end at Indonesia Superseries Premier in Jakarta as he faced a 21-10, 21-18 straight games defeat to unseeded Indian shuttler HS Prannoy on Thursday.
Prannoy, the world number 29, took to court at the Jakarta Convention Center shortly after his compatriot Kidambi Srikanth took out fourth seed Jan O Jorgensen with a hard-fought - 21-15, 20-22, 21-16 - win in his R16 match.
The 24-year-old dominated the first game taking a 6-0 lead against the Malaysian shuttler, who survived a scare by coming back after being a game down in his first-round outing against local shuttler Tommy Sugiarto. Prannoy never let Chong Wei catch him and strolled to a 21-10 win. The world number three though began the second game with a 2-0 lead, but the Indian shuttler recovered quickly and went into the mid-game break with a three-point lead.
Notably, this is Prannoy's first win in three meetings over the reigning All England Champion, who was favourites to defend his title in Jakarta. Chong Wei was bidding to become the first man to win seven titles at the World Superseries Premier event - a feat that would have seen him go past Ardy Wiranata and Taufik Hidayat's record of six crowns each.
Former Indonesia great Hendrawan, who is with the Badminton Association of Malaysia coaching team, had earlier said that Chong Wei was motivated for a record-breaking campaign in Jakarta, but also conceded that the three-time Olympic silver medallist was handed a tough draw, with possible quarter-final meeting with Chen Long.
The defeat comes as a shock as Chong Wei, who had already won the All England title and finished as runner-up at Malaysia Open earlier this year, was the firm favourite to reach the quarter-final beating Prannoy, who had been having another injury-ridden year.
Notably, the Indian shuttler suffered a knee injury during his title defence at Swiss Open and exited the Grand Prix Gold tournament with a quarter-final defeat to China's Shi Yuqi.