Siti of joy for BAM as youngster rises to big occasion

The gold is mine!: An ecstatic Siti Nurshuhaini Azman after beating K.Letshanaa to win the women’s singles final. — FAIHAN GHANI/The Star

YOUNGSTER Siti Nurshuhaini Azman (pic) stood tall to save the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) the blushes by capturing the women’s singles gold in the Malaysia Games (Sukma).

The 18-year-old Nurshuhaini gave her best display when she staved off the challenge of independent player K. Letshanaa to win 21-19, 21-9 in an all-Selangor clash at the Axiata Arena in Bukit Jalil yesterday.

Nurshuhaini was relieved to have lived up to her status as a national player after the likes of top seed Eoon Qi Xuan of Perak and second seed Myisha Khairul of Johor were sent packing in the second round and quarter-finals respectively.

Qi Xuan was stunned by independent player Amanda Yap while Myisha suffered the same fate at the hands of Letshanaa.

“I felt that I had a point to prove and was glad to win today to show that BAM players can do well,” said Nurshuhaini.

The Uber Cupper was delighted with a gold in her Sukma debut after hitting a rough patch in her last few tournaments.

“I’m so happy with this gold as I had not been doing well for a long time,” she admitted.

“It wasn’t an easy match but as the game progressed, I grew in confidence and felt that I had a good chance of winning. I hope this will be the start of better things for me.”

It was also double joy for Nurshuhaini yesterday as she was one of 17 shuttlers selected by the BAM for the World Junior Championships from Oct 17-30 in Santander, Spain. The list was announced by the national body yesterday.

“I will give my very best in the world junior meet. It will not be easy as there will be strong challengers from Indonesia and Thailand but I am hoping to reach the final in what will be my first and last appearance,” she added.

The others selected are Ong Xin Yee, Siti Zulaikha Azmi, Vannee Gobi, Chong Jie Yu, Lai Ting Cen, Carmen Ting and Lee Xin Jie in the women’s team.

The men’s team will consist of Justin Hoh, Eogene Ewe, Ariffin Nazri, Fazriq Razif, Wong Vin Sean, Jeremy Goonting, Choi Jian Sheng, Aaron Tai and Low Han Chen.

Men’s singles Final: Ng Tze Yong (Joh) bt Leong Jun Hao (FT) 18-21, 21-19, 21-12. Third-place playoff: Aidil Sholeh Ali Sadikin (Sel) bt Jacky Kok (Ked) 21-4, 22-20.

Men’s doubles Final: Tee Kai Wun-Tan Kok Xian (Mel) bt Lwi Sheng Hao-Yap Roy King (Joh) 21-16, 21-17. Third-place playoff: Mohd Noraidil Azman-Mohd Nurfirdaus Azman (Sel) bt Chia Jeng Hon-Choi Jian Sheng (Pah) 21-19, 21-13.

Women’s singles Final: Siti Nurshuhaini Azman (Sel) bt K. Letshanaa (Sel) 21-19, 21-9. Third-place playoff: Tan Zhing Yi (Pen) bt Amanda Yap (FT) 21-12, 21-12.

Women’s doubles Final: Toh Ee Wei-Yap Ling (Mel) bt Cheng Su Hui-Cheng Su Yin 21-12, 25-27, 21-16. Third-place playoff: Tang Wen Xin Wong Kha Yan (FT) bt R. Kasthuri-R. Venosha (Sel) 21-10, 17-21, 21-16.

Mixed doublesFinals: Tee Kai Wun-Toh Ee Wei (Mel) bt Mohd Haikal Nazri-Chan Wen Tse (Kel) 21-16, 21-13. Third-place playoff: Owen Ting-Wong Ling Ching (Swk) bt Tan Kok Xian-Yap Ling (Mel) 21-12, 19-21, 21-17.

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