Hosts Malaysia squeezed into the quarter-finals of the BWF World Junior Championships mixed team event after edging India 3-2 in their final Group Z2 match in Alor Star.
The Malaysians will now meet favourites China in the quarter-finals. It will be a tough task as the eight-times champions have shown impressive form in all their matches. The Chinese swept past the United States and Vietnam with 5-0 wins today. They had beaten Slovenia by a similar scoreline in their first match yesterday.
Malaysia got off to a good start to lead 2-0 through Tan Jinn Hua-Goh Yea Ching in the mixed doubles with a 21-16, 21-16 win over India’s Kuhoo Gard-Chirag Sen.
Cheam June Wei was fully stretched by Harsheel Dani in the boys’ singles before the Malaysian triumphed 21-19, 16-21, 21-15 in 57 minutes.
But India hit back through Ruthvika Shivani Gadde, who won her girls’ singles tie against Ho Yen Mei with a 21-11, 21-12 win. India levelled the score their boys’ doubles duo of M.R. Arjun-Chirag Shetty beat Chua Khek Wei-Ooi Zi Heng 21-17, 16-21, 21-10.
It was left to Goh Yea Ching-Peck Yen Wei in the girls’s doubles to clinch the winning point and they did it in style with a 21-18, 21-11 win over Reshma Kartik-Vaishnavi Iyer for a 3-2 win and place in the quarter-finals.
Rony Agustine, coach of the girls’ singles, said: “Yin Mei was under pressure to deliver the winning point in her match. She succumbed under pressure and did not play her usual game.”
Yea Ching, who featured in the mixed doubles with Jinn Hua and Yen Wei in the girls’ doubles, believes Malaysia have an even chance of beating China for a place in the semi-finals.