* Thais too strong for Malaysia in 3-1 win
* Europe and Asia share points with a 2-2 draw
THAILAND exacted sweet revenge on defending champions Malaysia in the Axiata Cup with a 3-1 win in a round robin match in the 3rd edition of the tournament at the Britama Sport Hall in Jakarta on Sunday while All-Star Europe got the better of All-Star 3-1.
It was Malaysia’s second successive defeat in Jakarta, having lost to Indonesia 4-0 on Saturday. The Malaysians beat the Thais 3-1 in last year’s final.
Malaysia reshuffled their lineup in the men’s singles with Liew Daren making his “debut” in the third edition – taking over from team captain Chong Wei Feng. The World No 57 did not disappoint the Malaysian camp with a 21-18, 21-9 win over Thailand’s Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk, the world No 27. It was an impressive performance from Daren as he ripped through in 32 minutes to give Malaysia a head start. Daren now leads 3-2 in the head to head count.
However, it was all gloom for Malaysia when it came to the women’s singles with Tee Jing Yee who was hardly a threat to Thailand’s Ratchanok Intanon (world No 7). The 19-year-old Ratchanok, who became the youngest world champion in 2013 when she beat China world No 1 and Olympic champion Li Xuerui 22-20, 18-21, 21-14 in the final, was simply took strong for the Malaysian and won 21-6, 21-19 in 30 minutes although Jing Yee did offer some resistance in the second set.
Ratchanok who is also a three-time junior world champion – winning in 2009 in Alor Setar, 2010 (Guadalajara, Mexico) and 2011 (Taipeh) has never lost to the Malaysian in their previous four meetings. Her last win over Jing Yee was in the Indonesian Open this year…
World No 10 Hoon Thien How-Tan Wee Kion, were expected to get Malaysia’s second point but instead the Malaysians fell to 21-13, 21-15 defeat to No 15 ranked Thai pair of Maneepong Jongjit-Nipitphon Puangpuapech in 27 minutes. Thailand’s world No 7 Sudkey Prapakamol-Saralee Thoungthonkam won their mixed doubles encounter against the Malaysian scratch combination of Tan Aik Guan-Ng Hui Lin.21-19, 21-15 in 34 minutes.
“It was a good start with Daren winning his match but we could not build on the momentum. Now we have to beat or draw with Europe tomorrow (Monday,” said coach Pang Chang Cheh.
Asia and Europe battled to a 2-2 draw to share the points – a result which Pang says will stand in good stead for the Malaysians.
RESULTS (DAY 4)
MALAYSIA 1 THAILAND 3
Liew Daren beat Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk 21-18, 21-9
Tee Jing Yee lost to Ratchanok Intanon 6-21, 19-21
Hoon Thien How-Tan Wee Kiong lost to Maneepong Jongjit-Nipitphon Puangpuapech 13-21, 15-21
Tan Aik Guan-Ng Hui Lin lost to Sudket Prapakamol-Saralee Thoungthongkam 19-21, 15-21
EUROPE 2 ASIA 2
Brice Leverdez (Fra) lost to Hu Yun (Hkg) 21-16, 20-22 12- 21
Kirsty Gilmour (Scot) beat Tai Tzu Ying (Hkg) 18-21 21-21, 21-16
Vladimir Ivanonv-Ivan Sozonov (Rus) beat Mannu Attri-Sumeeth Reddy (Ind) 21-19, 16-21, 21-16
Robert Blair-Imogen Bankier (Scot) lost to Lee Chun Hei-Chau Hoi Wah (Hkg) 23-25 18-21