Fresh from winning the Perak Open last month, Ng Qi Xuan is not ready to give up her Under-16 title in the 100PLUS National Junior Circuit GP Finals which is currently on-going at the Kedah Badminton Hall in Alor Star.
Qi Xuan marched into the quarter-finals today with an unbeaten record in Group A of the preliminary round matches.
In her final Group A match, she defeated Kam Wei Li of Sarwak 21-13, 21-19 in 24 minutes. In the first match Qi Xuan won 21-8, 21-15 against Perak’s Ting Ee Chin.
The 16-year-old Bukit Jalil student will take Yap Ling of Malacca for a place kin the semi-finals.
“I won the Under-16 title as a 15-year-old and as a 16-year-old I want to retain the title before moving up to the Under-18 category next year. There is some pressure this year but I am ready to face the challenge,” said Qi Xuan who hails from Seremban.
“Winning the Perak Open is a big boost to my badminton career. It is my first Open title. Hopefully I can ride on this and continue my winning ways. However, I am not underrating any of my opponents in Alor Star. They have shown a lot of improvement in their game and I have to be wary of them.
A win against Yap Ling will see Qi Xuan face either Selangpr’s N. Saranya or Penang’s Eoon Qi Xuan in the semifinals.
In last year’s Under-16 final Qi Xuan defeated her Bukit Jalil teammate M. Thinaah in three sets. Qi Xuan again got the better of Thinaah in the Perak Open final and this time won in straight sets.
The Boys’ Under-14 Group E final match stole the limelight as two Penang-born players – Lee Shun representing his home state and Loo Bin Kun who is now playing for Bukit Jalil battled for a place in the quarter-finals.
The former teammates who played together for Penang in the Under-12 category gave no quarters away in the 56 minute encounter.
The taller Shun Yang won the three-set thriller – coming back from a set down to prevail 19-21, 21-19, 23-21 and top the group to advance to the quarter-finals.
At the end of the match both players cried unashamedly. Shun Yang shed tears of joy while Bin Kun had to be consoled by his family members for the heartbreaking defeat.
However, the Shun Yang faces a tough match against home favourite Ooi Jhy Dar – the Group A winner.
Penang coach Razlan Abdullah said Shun Yang’s better fitness won the match for him.