Pearly-Thinaah vow to learn from painful lesson and return stronger

PETALING JAYA: Healing from a heartbreak can take time but shuttler M. Thinaah promises to come through the process stronger.

World No. 11 Thinaah and Pearly Tan exited from the World Championships in a sad way after suffering an agonising 21-17, 17-21, 19-21 defeat to China’s world No. 6 Zhang Shuxian-Zheng Yu at the Royal Arena in Copenhagen.

They were just a step away from becoming the country’s first women’s pair to win a medal at the world meet but their hopes were shattered.

“It’s the worst feeling ever felt as an athlete but it’s not the end,” said Thinaah after the quarter-final exit.

The loss hurt Pearly-Thinaah more as the duo were leading 11-5 in the second game after winning the first but could not make their advantage count.

Thinaah could not contain her emotions after the defeat and had to be consoled by Pearly, who also shed tears as well.

“We are heartbroken as we made the same mistakes again and again when we were leading,” lamented a tearful Pearly.

“We’ve always reminded each other to stay calm and focused when we are leading but we rushed into things too much again.

“I don’t know how to describe but I’m angry with myself for making the same mistakes again and causing us to lose this match.

“We should not have lost but this is a very painful lesson for us to learn yet again. We need to go back, learn from this lesson and train to become stronger,” added Pearly.

Despite the defeat, Pearly-Thinaah can still take heart from their outing as they were the country’s first women’s doubles pair to reach the last eight since Amelia Anscelly-Soong Fie Cho in 2015.

The pair have promised to work harder to find a way to overcome the Chinese pair in future tournaments.

Pearly-Thinaah’s loss in the world meet meant that their winless run against Zhang Shuxian and Zheng Yu is extended to four matches.

The former also lost to the Chinese duo in the Australian Open in Sydney recently, last year’s World Tour Finals and Malaysian Open.

Pearly-Thinaah will now need to pick themselves up for the China Open from Sept 5-10 in Changzhou where they will open their campaign against Holland’s Debora Jille-Cheryl Seinen.

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