Malaysia grab double

Discussion in 'Asian Badminton Championship 2006' started by ants, Apr 2, 2006.

  1. ants

    ants Regular Member

    Jul 19, 2002
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    Entrepreneur , Modern Nomad
    Malaysian Citizen of the World
    April 3
    MALAYSIA stormed to a grand double in the Asian Badminton Championships for the first time when Lee Chong Wei and veterans Choong Tan Fook-Lee Wan Wah were crowned singles and doubles champions respectively at the Johor Baru City Stadium yesterday.

    Chong Wei, the top seed, played an intelligent game to beat Thailand's Boonsak Ponsana 21-12, 21-16 in just 35 minutes to become the first player since Foo Kok Keong in 1994 to win the Asian men's singles title.

    "The victory is important for me. I'm getting more confident under the 21-point system and I want to give my best in the Thomas Cup Finals," said a jubilant Chong Wei.

    Tan Fook-Wan Wah emulated Cheah Soon Kit-Yap Kim Hock's 1995 feat when they ended the giant-killing run of world junior champions Hoon Thien How-Tan Boon Heong with a 17-21, 21-11, 21-12 win in yesterday’s 40-minute final. It was third time lucky for Tan Fook-Wan Wah who had lost to Indonesia’s Deny Kantono-Antonius in 1997 and Rexy Mainaky-Tony Gunawan in 2000.

    The keenly-awaited men's singles final was evenly poised in the first game as Boonsak prevented Chong Wei from attacking by keeping his return shots low.

    Chong Wei, already making a name for himself as the most exciting player under the new 21-point scoring system, broke Boonsak's resilience with his delicate net play and accurate smashes to pull ahead to 13-8.

    Boonsak reduced the deficit to 13-10 but the Malaysian was not in the mood to let his dominance slip away conceding just two more points before wrapping up the first game 21-12.

    Chong Wei, who has been playing non-stop since the Commonwealth Games two weeks’ ago, found himself trailing 9-4 in the second. Realising it would be fatal to let the match go into a rubber, Chong Wei struck back and reeled off eight points on the trot to lead 12-9. Boonsak drew level at 12-12 but Chong Wei, who often ups the pace on reaching 15 points, did the same again to pull ahead 19-15, and then wrapped up the proceedings 21-16 when the Thai sent the shuttle wide.

    Chong Wei thus has the distinction of having won the last three grand prix tournaments held in Malaysia. He won back-to-back Malaysia Open crowns in 2004 and 2005.

    Chong Wei received RM37,000 (US$10,000) while Boonsak pocketed RM17,500 (US$5,000). Chong Wei said that it was the toughest match he had played in the tournament so far.

    "It could have been tougher had it gone to the rubber. I knew I might not win the third and managed to fight hard to finish it off in straight games," said Chong Wei. "I have achieved what I came here for."

    Meanwhile, Thien How-Boon Heong started the doubles final impressively and shocked Tan Fook-Wan Wah by taking the first game 21-17.

    However, experience told when Tan Fook-Wan Wah found their rhythm to win the second 21-11, and then the one-sided rubber 21-12.

    Tan Fook-Wan Wah took home RM33,000 (US$9,000) while Thien How-Boon Heong settled for RM17,500 (US$5,000).

    "It's very satisfying to win a four-star tournament. Too often we have finished runner-up and this is a good boost for our confidence," said the 30-year-old Tan Fook.

    "Hopefully, this win will trigger our target to become the World No 1 pair again."

    Wang Chen of Hong Kong clinched her third Asian title in the women's singles when she edged Kaori Mori of Japan 21-14, 9-21, 21-13.

    China’s up-and-coming pair Yu Yang-Du Jing beat Chien Yu Chin-Cheng Wen Hsing of Taiwan 21-11, 21-16 in the women’s doubles final.

    The mixed doubles was won by Indonesia’s world champions Nova Widianto-Lilyana Natsir who beat Thai second seeds Sudket Prapakamol-Saralee Thungthongkam 21-16, 21-23, 21-15.

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