PETALING JAYA: Doubles shuttlers Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong’s reunion after four months of “separation” ended in disappointment at the Thailand Masters.
The Rio Olympic Games silver medallists were sent packing 15-21, 20-22 by unheralded Tinn Isriyanet-Kittisak Namdash of Thailand in the semi-finals in Bangkok, Thailand, yesterday.
V Shem-Wee Kiong were split after crashing out in the second round at the World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland, in August last year but they were paired up again as part of the team’s strategy for the Thomas Cup Finals.
Hopes were high on them to start the year in winning style but the world No. 29 struggled to find their footing.
V Shem said: “The Thais played well. They were fast and consistent. This is our first competition after a while. It was not a good start but we hope to play better at the Malaysian Masters (Jan 16-21).”
Unlike V Shem-Wee Kiong, Malaysia’s top mixed pair Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying showed they had not lost their touches by reaching the final in their first tournament in eight months.
Yesterday, the Rio Olympic Games silver medallists combined superbly to beat Nipitphon Phuangphuapet-Jongkolphan Kititharakul of Thailand 21-15, 21-11.
The duo, who have fallen to world No. 58, will face another strong Thai pair Dechapol Puavaranukroh-Puttita Supajirakul in today’s title match.
Liu Ying said: “It’s great to get back on top with Peng Soon. We were rusty in the opening game but now, we’re complementing each other quite well.
“We’re getting better and hopefully, our good understanding will result in a title here.”
Meanwhile, Asian junior champion Leong Jun Hao continued to sizzle when he marched into the men’s singles final after a hard-fought 20-22, 21-19, 21-18 win over Thailand’s Kantaphon Wangcharoen.
The 18-year-old takes on Indonesia’s Tommy Sugiarto in today’s final and is determined to win his first senior title.
Tommy has earlier prevented an all-Malaysian final when he slogged to beat former international Liew Daren 17-21, 21-17, 21-18 in another men’s singles semi-final match.
Malaysia’s challenge in the women’s singles and doubles events ended in the semi-finals with the defeats of Soniia Cheah, S. Kisona and Chow Mei Kuan-Lee Meng Yean respectively.
Men’s singles: Leong Jun Hao (Mas) bt Kantaphon Wangcharoen (Tha) 20-22, 21-19, 21-18; Tommy Sugiarto (Ina) bt Liew Daren (Mas) 17-21, 21-17, 21-18.
Men’s doubles: Wahyu Nayaka Arya PangkaryaniraAde Yusuf Santoso (Ina) bt Berry Angriawan-Hardianto Hardianto (Ina) 21-17, 21-17; Tinn Isriyanet-Kittisak Namdash (Tha) bt Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong (Mas) 21-15, 22-20.
Women’s singles: Nitchaon Jindapol (Tha) bt Soniia Cheah (Mas) 16-21, 21-15, 21-17; Pornpawee Chochuwong (Tha) bt S. Kisona (Mas) 14-21, 21-9, 21-11.
Women’s doubles: Jongkolphan KititharakulRawinda Prajongjai (Tha) bt Chow Mei Kuan-Lee Meng Yean (Mas) 18-21, 21-13, 21-17; Anggia Shitta AwandaNi Ketut Mahadewi Istarani (Ina) bt Savitree Amitrapai-Pacharapun Chochuwong (Tha) 21-14, 21-18.
Mixed doubles: Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying (Mas) bt Nipitphon Phuangphuapet-Jongkolphan Kititharakul (Tha) 21-15, 21-11; Dechapol Puavaranukroh-Puttita Supajirakul (Tha) bt Chen Tang Jie-Peck Yen Wei (Mas) 21-19, 21-13