Buddies Rayner-Goh bloom as stars for future with first Under-21 title

Cool dudes: Rayner Beh Chun Meng (right) and Goh Boon Zhe won the National Under-21 men’s doubles title in Kuantan yesterday. — How Kim Tho

PETALING JAYA: Good buddies Rayner Beh Chun Meng-Goh Boon Zhe lifted their first Under-21 men’s doubles title to show they are shaping up well to emerge as the country’s promising pair in the future.

Yesterday, the top seeds lived up to their billing by beating Choi Jian Sheng-Wong Vin Sean 16-21, 21-17, 22-20 in a thrilling final in Kuantan.

Chun Meng, who will turn 21 in June, was happy that they stood solid despite a strong challenge from their opponents.

“I’m so happy that both of us played well today but we must cut down on simple mistakes though. I think, our key to victory was that we were brave during the crucial point,” said Chun Meng.

“Boon Zhe and I have been playing since we were 15 years old but our path did not cross until we came here at ABM (Academy Badminton Malaysia).

“Both of us are from Penang but my partner is from Bukit Mertajam and I’m from the island. We had different coaches too but we have grown close since playing together here.”

Chun Meng-Boon Zhe are currently ranked 85th in the world and those ahead of them in the national and independent teams are Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik (No. 5), Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi (No. 12), Man Wei Chong-Tee Kai Wun (18), Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin Rumsani (19), Choong Hon Jian-Haikal Mohd (39), Low Hang Yee-Ng Eng Cheong (48), Junaidi Arif-Yap Roy King (58), Lwi Sheng Hao-Jimmy Wong (73), and Nur Mohd Azriyn Ayub-Tan Wee Kiong (82).

Chun Meng hopes to move into top 50 by end of this year for a start.

“We also hope to win some titles this year,” said Chun Meng.

The duo were given the chance to strut themselves at the Cambodia SEA Games last year, and played in the team that finished with the silver.

They lost tamely to 2022 All-England champions Bagas Maulana-Shohibul Fikri but learnt valuable experience in the final, where Indonesia went on to win 3-1.

The Under-19 German International champions will now focus on the Vietnam International Challenge next month.


(BAM players unless stated)

Men’s singles: Eogene Ewe bt Ng In Qin (Sel) 21-12, 21-12.

Men’s doubles: Rayner Beh Chun Meng-Goh Boon Zhe bt Choi Jian Sheng-Wong Vin Sean 16-21, 21-17, 22-20.

Women’s singles: Siti Nurshuhaini Azman bt Loh Zhi Wei (Sel) 21-12, 21-17.

Women’s doubles: Chan Wen Tse-Vannee Gobi bt Cheng Su Hui-Lee Xin Jie 21-18, 21-19.

Mixed doubles: Jeremy Juan Zhen Liang-Vanessa Ng Po Lyn bt Goh Yi Qin-Loh Zhi Wei (Sel) 21-15, 21-15.

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