*Europe beat Singapore 3-1
Last year’s runners-up Thailand powered by World No 11 Boonsak Ponsana, romped to a 4-0 win over minnows Philippines for their third win in a row in the USD1 million Axiata Cup team event at the Britama Sport Mall, in Jakarta on Saturday.
All-Star Europe snatched a 3-1 win over Singapore in another late match to enhance their hopes of a top four finish in the eight team tournament with the top teams qualifying for the semi-finals. The semi-finals and the finals will be played in Kuala Lumpur on Dec 6-7.
Thailand rested their ace in the 3-1 win over All-Star Europe on Friday. Boonsak made shortwork of Jayson Oba-On in 28 minutes with a 21-10, 21-13 win in the men’s singles. Thailand stretched their lead to 2-0 through Porntip Buranaprasertuk who strolled past Airah Mae Nicole Aldo 21-9, 21-15 in the women’s singles.
In the men’s doubles the Thai pair of Wannawat Ampunsuwan-Patiphat Chalardchaleam (No 33) whipped Philip Joper Escueta-Ronel Estanislao 21-16, 21-16 before Nipitphon Puangpuapech-Sapsiree Taerattanachai completed the whitewash with a 21-14, 22-20 win over Peter Gabriel Magnaye-Anna Patricia Barredo in the mixed doubles.
Europe were jolted by Singapore’s China-born Chen Jiayuan levelled the score at 1-1 when she defeated Scotland’s seasoned campaigner Kirsty Gilmour, ranked No 21 in the world. The No 58 ranked Singaporean came back from a set down to win 9-21, 21-17, 22-20 in a 56 minute thriller after Brice Leverdez won his men’s singles match against Derek Wong.
The Frenchman, No 24 in the world and winner of the gold medal at the 2013 Meditteranean Games in Mersin, Turkey, triumphed, 21-17, 21-16 in 35 minutes to give Europe a winning start
But Gilmour’s defeat and Vladmiri Ivanov-Ivan Sozonov’s over Singapore’s scratch pair of Hendra Wijaya-Loh Kean Hean turned the tie into a keenly fought affair. The European champions from Russia, however, were taken the full distance by the gritty Singaporeans before running out 21-19, 18-21, 21-13 winners in 41 minutes to give Europe a 2-1 lead.
In the mixed doubles it was another three-set thriller after Robert Blair-Imogen Bankier (No 21), unexpectedly lost the first 26-24. However, the Scottish pair recovered to win the next two sets at 21-13, 21-8 for a 3-1 win.
EUROPE 3 SINGAPORE 1
Brice Leverdez (Fra) beat Derek Wong 21-17, 21-16
Kirsty Gilmour lost to Chen Jiayuan 21-9, 17-19, 20-22
Vladimir Ivanov-Ivan Sozonov (Rus) beat Hendra Wijaya-Loh Kean Hean 21-19, 18-21, 21-13
Robert Blair-Imogen Bankier (Scot) beat Terry Hee Yong Kai-Tan Wei Han 24-26, 21-13, 21-8
THAILAND 4 PHILIPPINES 0
Boonsak Ponsana beat Jayson Oba-On 21-10, 21-13
Porntip Buranaprasertsuk beat Airah Mae Nicole Aldo 21-9, 21-15
Wannawat Ampunsuwan-Patiphat Chalardchaleam beat Philip Joper Escueta-Ronel Estanislao 21-16, 21-16
Nipitphon Puangpuapech-Sapsiree Taerattanachai beat Peter Gabriel Magnaye-Anna Patricia Barredo 21-14, 22-20