England's new singles coach Kenneth Jonassen saw Rajiv Ouseph and Carl Baxter come through two rounds of action at the Yonex US Open to reach the last 16 in Orange County, Los Angeles , yesterday.

Third seed Ouseph, the three-times English National champion from Middlesex, survived a tight opener against Malaysian Lee Hock Lai to win 17-21 21-9 21-19 on his third match point. He then scored a more comfortable 21-15 21-11 victory over Taipei’s Cheng Fu Pao to earn a last 16-clash with another Taipei opponent in Chou Tien Chen.

Sixth seed Baxter, two-time Nationals runner-up to Ouseph, was too strong for Canada’s David Snider in winning 21-14 21-18 in their first-round contest and the Avon man was just as impressive in dealing with Japan’s Tomoya Inoue 21-11 21-11. Baxter now meets France’s ninth seed Brice Leverdez, who was runner-up in Canada last week.

Surrey’s Ben Beckman looked like joining them in the last 16 when he beat Arak Bhokanandh 21-5 21-13 in the first round then hit back to level his match with Taipei’s Hsieh Yu Hsing. But the fourth seed edged him in the decider, winning a close contest 22-20 17-21 21-19 despite Beckman having led 20-18 in the first game.

Jonassen said: “We had a good day in the men’s singles with Carl and Raj raising their level after their morning matches. Both played well to reach the last 16.

“Ben also put up a really good display against an Olympic 2008 quarter-finalist. He lost but he put up a high level and showed plenty of fighting skill in going down 21-19 in the third.”

There was disappointment in the women’s singles with Rachel Howard falling to fourth seed Judith Meulendijks despite pushing the Dutch star all the way in the second game before losing 21-13 22-20. National champion Elizabeth Cann (Jersey) also went out in the first round, losing two close games against Hung Shi Han 21-19 21-17. England’s other women’s singles hopes, Sarah Walker (Essex) and Solenn Pasturel (Jersey), had gone out in the first round of qualifying on day one.

Jonassen added: “Elizabeth and Rachel both lost to good players but not without a good fight. Either match could have gone to three games.”

Nathan Robertson (Notts) and Jenny Wallwork (Yorks) are second seeds in the mixed doubles and they began their challenge with a 15-minute 21-2 21-10 win over Mexico’s Mauricio Casillas and Marisol Dominguez. The European bronze medallists meet Canada’s Adrian Liu and Jocelyn Ko in today’s second round.

Chris Langridge (Surrey) and Alyssa Lim (Bucks) joined Robertson and Wallwork in the second round with a 21-15 21-9 victory over Canada’s Joseph Rogers and Phyllis Chan to earn a second-round match with Taipei third seeds Lee Sheng Mu and Chien Yu Chin.

In the men’s doubles Langridge and Andrew Ellis (Yorks) outplayed Canada’s Darren Hong and Kevin Li 21-9 21-15 and the seventh seeds now face another Canadian pair in Adrian Liu and Derrick Ng.

Langridge is looking to improve on his two quarter-finals with Lim and Ellis in Canada last week.

Yesterday’s action features an amazing 112 matches but today’s third round will feature just 40 contests.

Jonassen, part of a three-man coaching team along with Pete Jeffrey and Graham Hurrell, predicted: “The next round will be interesting with some good chances to reach the quarter-finals. But the players will have to raise their level a little bit more.”

To follow the results and draws check out www.tournamentsoftware.com