Badminton

Published: Sunday January 19, 2014 MYT 5:17:00 PM
Updated: Sunday January 19, 2014 MYT 11:19:06 PM

Khim Wah-V Shem claim doubles title… at last (updated)

Remember their names. Lim Khim Wah (left) and Goh V Shem are the 2014 Malaysian Open men's doubles champions. - FAIHAN GHANI/The Star

Remember their names. Lim Khim Wah (left) and Goh V Shem are the 2014 Malaysian Open men's doubles champions. - FAIHAN GHANI/The Star

BUKIT JALIL: Lim Khim Wah-Goh V Shem finally nailed their first Super Series title.

And what better way to mark their breakthrough than in front of a vociferous home crowd cheering them all the way at the Putra Stadium.

Understandably, the duo just could not hold back their delight as they jumped up in joy after scoring the winning point as a wild celebration erupted inside the stadium.

On Sunday, the duo proved to be the new heroes for the country when they dumped China’s Chai Biao and Hong Wei 21-19, 21-18 to claim the title at the Maybank Malaysian Open.

The Malaysian fans joined in the celebration and one can hardly blame them as they have been starved of a men’s doubles major title for the last four years.

Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong were the last pair to win a Super Series title, also at home in 2010.

Khim Wah-V Shem emulate the feat in their three-year partnership which was marred by several break-ups.

But on Sunday, they hit all the right notes to combine superbly to announce their arrival as another pair Malaysia can depend on at international level.

The opening game saw a ding-dong battle with both pairs separated by only one point. With the cheering Malaysian crowd urging them on for very point, Khim Wah-V Shem piled on the pressure against the powerful lanky Chinese shuttlers to pull away for a 21-19 win.

The second game was like a psychological warfare as both pairs resorted to mind games. They tried to intimidate each other with gestures and cold stares.

It worked initially for the Chinese as they strolled to a five-point lead.

But after the breather, the Malaysians stepped up a gear and staged an outstanding comeback. They pushed the Chinese to make all the mistakes and trooped off as winners.

V Shem was elated that they made the breakthrough at home.

“I believe the Chinese pair made the mistake of intimidating us on our backyard. It caused even louder and bolder support and response from our fans. It really motivated us to go all out to win,” said V Shem.

“We have worked out our differences. Now, we are united to win honours for the country. This is a great start for the year.”

Khim Wah-V Shem also hope they will not turn out to be one-hit wonders.

“This is a good start for us and we will keep at it. This win here will only motivate us to produce more results for the country,” said Khim Wah.

When asked whether they would now be considered the successors to Kien Keat-Boon Heong, Khim Wah was modest.

“We are not here to replace them. We want the whole men’s doubles department to rise up. We will work together.

“We do not want this win to get to our head. We will take it step-by-step and make sure that we maintain our confidence and continue with our momentum,” he said.

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