* Daren wins men’s singles title
* Peng Soon-Liu Yin take mixed doubles
It could be the beginning of a new journey for Malaysia’s Daren Liew when he nailed the men’s singles title in the USD15,000 41st Yonex Polish Open final in Arlamow on Saturday.
The 27-year-old Daren, seeded No 8 defeated No 5 seed Emil Holst of Denmark in the final which lasted 34 minutes – his first title since winning the French Open in 2012. His win would not come at a better time for a timely boost for his qualifying round matches for a place in the main draw of the USD500,000 Maybank Malaysian Open from March 31-April 5 in Kuala Lumpur.
To add to Malaysia’s joy the mixed doubles pair of Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Yin won the mixed doubles with a 28-26, 21-18 win over India’s Akshay Dewalkar-Pradya Gadre. It was a tough fight in the first set in the 39 minute against the Indians but once the Malaysians got into stride it was a smoother journey for the champions.
The win in only their second tournament together after Liu Yin was sidelined with knee injuries which saw their world rankings plummet to a low 168. They were once ranked No 3 in the world.
Malaysia can expect more from this pair as they have set their sights on qualifying for the Rio Olympics in 2016.
“This win means a lot to me for my badminton career,” said Daren, who skippered Malaysia to the Thomas Cup Finals in New Delhi in June last year. “My confidence has received a big boost.”
His win over the Dane made up for his disappointing defeat to India’s Anand Pawar in the second round in the Swiss Open.
RESULTS ALL FINALS
Daren Liew (Mas) beat Emil Holst (Den) 21-15, 21-11
Kenta Kazuno-Kazushi Yamada (Jpn) beat Adam Cwalia-Przemysjlaw Wacha (Pol) 21-19, 21-12
Karin Schnaase (Ger) beat Manja Ulistina (Ukr) 21-19, 21-15
Pradnya Gadre-N. Sikki Reddy (Ind) beat Alex Brace-Phyllis Chan (Can) 21-16, 21-18
Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying (Mas) beat Akshay Dewalkaw-Pradnya Gardre (Ind) 28-26, 21-18