Jin Wei can end long wait for first World Tour title


PETALING JAYA: It may sound odd but singles shuttler Goh Jin Wei (pic) has yet to win her first World Tour title.

But the 22-year-old will get a chance to end that long and agonising wait when she takes on homester Nguyen Thuy Linh in the women’s singles final of the Vietnam Open at the Nguyen Du Stadium in Ho Chi Minh today.

Yesterday, Jin Wei displayed great fighting spirit to come from behind to subdue Vietnam’s Thi Phuong Tran 12-21, 21-17, 21-14 in the semi-finals.

The two-time world junior champion Jin Wei has not won any major title although she had reigned as the country’s best before she was affected by her stomach ailment in 2019.

Her most significant performance was at the 2019 Malaysian Masters when she defeated Akane Yamaguchi of Japan and He Bingjiao of China before going down to Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand in the semis.

The 2017 SEA Games champion has won lower ranked tournaments like Vietnam International (2015), Belgian International (2015) and Orleans International (2017) but never a World Tour title.

Jin Wei’s coach Nova Armada has urged her to give one final push to win her maiden World Tour title.

“This is the third match that went the distance for Jin Wei in this tournament. She was a bit tired yesterday and I feel that she needs to rest well and recover for the final. She has a chance of winning if she recovers well physically,” said Nova.

World No. 50 Jin Wei will fancy her chances in the final as she has never lost to Thuy Linh in their past three meetings.

Their last encounter though, was in the group stages of the 2018 Asian Team Championships and currently Thuy Linh is ranked not far behind Jin Wei at No. 58.

Meanwhile, it was the end of the road for Cheam June Wei in the men’s singles after he went down 11-21, 17-21 to China’s Sun Feixiang.

June Wei, who also trains under Nova at Sport Affairs, can still walk tall after reaching his first World Tour semi-final in four years.

“After June Wei lost the first game, he was leading 16-12 in the second but then smashed out and allowed his opponent to catch up. Overall, he has improved but needs to work on his physique if he is to get even better,” said Nova.

Malaysia’s challenge has also ended in the men’s doubles after Mohd Haikal Nazri-Wan Arif Wan Junaidi lost 17-21, 14-21 to China’s He Jiting-Zhao Haodong.

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS

Men’s singles: Sun Feixiang (Chn) bt Cheam June Wei (Mas) 21-11, 21-17; Kodai Naraoka (Jpn) bt Weng Hongyang (Chn) 21-18, 21-14.

Men’s doubles: He Jiting-Zhao Haodong (Chn) bt Mohd Haikal Nazrin-Wan Arif Wan Junaidi (Mas) 21-17, 21-14; Ren Xiangyu-Tan Qiang (Chn) bt Sabar Gutama-Moh Reza Pahlevi (Ina) 21-14, 21-17.

Women’s singles: Goh Jin Wei (Mas) bt Thi Phuong Tran (Vie) 12-21, 21-17, 21-14; Nguyen Thuy Linh (Vie) bt Vu Thi Trang (Vie) 21-15, 21-16.

Women’s doubles: Benyapa Aimsaard-Nuntakarn Aimsaard (Tha) bt Jin Yujia-Crystal Wong (Sin) 20-22, 21-18, 21-7; Febriana Kusuma-Amalia Pratiwi (Ina) bt Lui Lok Lok-Ng Wing Yung (Hkg) 21-9, 21-12.

Mixed doubles: Rehan Naufal-Lisa Ayu (Ina) bt Rohan Kapoor-N. Sikki Reddy (Ind) 21-16, 21-14; Dejan Ferdinansyah-Gloria Widjaja (Ina) bt Zachariah Sumanti-Hediana Julimarbela (Ina) 21-17, 21-13.

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Goh Jin Wei , World Tour , Vietnam Open

   

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