Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying retained their mixed doubles title in the USD150,000 Princess Sirivannavari Thailand Masters at the Huamark Indoor Stadium in Bangkok on Sunday.
Their 21-16, 21-15 win over Thai second seeds Dechapol Puavaranukroh-Sapsiree Taerattanachai in 46 minutes was all the more sweeter as it was their first tournament since turning professionals this year.
With the win the Malaysians stretched their head to head count to 4-0. Sunday’s win also saw the Malaysians pocket USD11,850 in prize money while the losers took home USD5,700.
“We are happy to retain our title…more so as this is our first tournament as professionals and it has given us added confidence for the coming tournaments this year,” said Liu Ying after the match.
Peng Soon thanked the “sporting Thai fans” and all those, both at home and abroad, who have supported them throughout their badminton career.
Interestingly, the Rio Olympics silver medallists went into the match ranked No 6 against the fifth ranked Thais.
There was more joy at Huamark Indoor Stadium when top seeds and former world No 1 Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong ended their title drought by taking the men’s doubles title also in straight games – defeating fifth seeds Lu Ching Yao-Yang Po Han of Chinese Taipei 21-13, 21-17 in 32 minutes.
The Rio Olympics silver medal winners last title was winning the season ending BWF’s Superseries Finals in Dubai in December 2016 – defeating Japan’s Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda 21-14, 21-19 in the final.
“We are grateful to win our first title after more than two years,” said Wee Kiong in a live television interview after the final.
Wee Kiong said: “This title is a boost to our professional career. However. we to prepare ourselves for a tough journey.”
Meanwhile, Penang-born Singaporean Loh Kean Yew pulled off a stunning win over China’s two-time Olympic and five-time World champion Lin Dan in straight games 21-19, 21-18 in the men’s singles final for his first world tour title.
Kean Yew, ranked a low 125 against Lin Dan’s 13, displayed tremendous fighting qualities to comeback from in both games. Lin Dan, the top seed surrendered a 19-14 lead in the first game and a 14-6 lead in the second.
For the record Kean Yew came through the qualifiers to make the main draw. RIZAL ABDULLAH