Women’s doubles top seeds Vivian Hoo-Woon Khe Wei and men’s doubles second seeds Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi marched into the final of their respective events in the USD120,000 Skycity New Zealand Open Grand Prix Gold in Auckland on Saturday.
For Vivian Hoo-Khe Wei it is inspiring performance from the pair that won won the Sea Games gold in Myanmar in 2013 and the silver in the Singapore in 2015. They lost to teammates Amelia Alicia Anscelly-Soon Fie Cho in the final in Singapore.
“The pressure is on us after our poor run this year. Reaching the final is a big boost for us because this is the last tournament for us before the KL Games,” said Khe Wei.
The pair had been warned that their partnership will be broken up if they did not perform in the Sea Games. A spate of poor results saw them miss several Superseries tournaments, including the Australian Open after they failed to get past the first round in the Superseries Premier Indonesia Open.
However it was not an easy win for the top Malaysian pair in the semi-finals in Auckland. The top seeds battled for 81 minutes before they subdued Indonesia’s Greysia Polii-Apriyanti Rahayu 21-18, 13-21, 21-13.
The New Zealand Open is used as a preview of the Sea Games and thew win over the Indonesians is a big boost for the Malaysians.
They will meet fourth seeds Ayako Skuramoto-Yukiko Takahata in Sunday’s final. The Japanese defeated China’s Liu Xuanxuan-Xia Yuting 23-21, 21-13 in 49 minutes.
Second seeds Yew Sin-Ee Yi, Malaysia’s number two pair will face top seeds Chen Hung Ling-Wang Chi-Lin of Chinese Taipei in the final.
The Malaysians packed off China’s He Jiting-Tan Qiang 21-19, 21-11 in 28 minutes while Hung-ling-Chi-lin were too strong for Indonesians Kenas Adi Haryanto-Moh Reza Pahlevi Isfahani 21-13, 21-15 to advance,
The men’s singles will be between top seed Wang Tzu-wei of Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong’s Lee Cheuk Yiu. Tzu-wei beat compatriot Lin Yu-hsien 21-11, 21-12 while Cheuk Yiu defeated sixth seed Hsu Jen-hao of Chinese Taipei 21-12, 21-19.
In the women’s singles top seed Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, gave her World Championships a boost, to reach the final against Japan’s fourth seed Saena Kawakami of Japan.
Wang Tzu-wei (Tpe) beat Lin Yu-hsien (Tpe) 21-11m 21-12
Lee Cheuk Yiu (Hkg) beat Hsu Jen Hao (Tpe) 21-12, 21-19
Chen Hung-lin-Wang Chi-lin (Tpe) beat Kenas Adi Haryanto-Moh Reza Pahlevi Isfahani (Ina) 21-13, 21-15
Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi (Mas) beat He Jiting-Tan Qiang (Chn) 21-19m 21-11
Ratchanok Intanon (Tha) beat Hana Ramadini (Ina) 21-13, 21-17
Saena Kawakami (Jpn) beat Fitriani Fitriani (Ina) 21-12, 17-21, 21-17
Vivian Hoo-Woon Khe Wei (Mas) beat Greysia Polii-Apriyani Rahayu (Ina) 21-18, 13-21, 21-13
Aayako Sakuramoto-Yukiko Takahata (Jpn) beat Liu Xuanxuan-Xia Yuting (Chn) 23-21, 21-13
Sawan Serasinghe-Setyana Mapasa (Aus) beat Zhou Haodong-Xu Ya (Chn) 25-23, 21-18
Ronald Ronald-Annisa Saufika (Ina) beat Wang Chi-lin-Wendy Chen Hsuan-yu (Tpe/Aus) 21-9, 19-21, 21-6