January 19, 2018
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Leong Jun Hao. — Picture courtesy of FacebookLeong Jun Hao. — Picture courtesy of FacebookKUALA LUMPUR, Jan 13 — National junior shuttler, Leong Jun Hao is edging closer to claim his first international title of the season by advancing to the final match in the Thailand Masters Badminton Tournament held at Nimibutr Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, today.

Jun Hao, who came for the qualifying round, however, had to sweat before edging Kantaphon Wangcharoen of Thailand; winning in 20-22, 21-19 and 21-18 in the semi-finals match which lasted about 76 minutes, according to the Badminton World Federation (BWF) website;www.bwfbadminton.com.

He will meet the second seed, Tommy Sugiarto, tomorrow after the Indonesian player edged another Malaysian player, Liew Daren;17-21, 21-17 and 21-18 in another semi-finals match.

Silver medallist of the 2016 Rio Olympics, Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying also booked their place in the final by defeating Nipitphon Phuangphuapet/Jongkolphan Kititharakul of Thailand;21-15 and 21-11 in the mixed doubles category.

Another national mixed doubles pair, Chen Tang Jie/Peck Yen Wei, however, crashed out from the tournament after losing 19-21 and 13-21 to the seventh seed, Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Puttita Supajirakul of Thailand.

Malaysia’s challenge in the men’s doubles, women’s singles and also doubles fizzled out after the players were beaten by their opponents.

2016 Rio Olympics silver medallist, Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong who are also the third seed, suffered an unexpected 15-21 and 20-22 defeat to the unheralded Thailand pair of Tinn Isriyanet-Kittisak Namdash.

Two Malaysian women’s singles shuttlers— Soniia Cheah and S. Kisona were eliminated from the tournament after losing to their Thai opponents.

Cheah, the fourth seed lost 21-16, 15-21 and 17-21 to the top seed, Nitchaon Jindapol while Kisona were beaten by the third seed, Pornpawee Chochuwong; losing 21-14, 9-21 and 11-21.

National women’s doubles pair, the third seed Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean also suffered the same fate after losing 21-18, 13-21 and 17-21 to the top seed, Jongkolphan Kititharakul/Rawinda Prajongjai of Thailand. — Bernama



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