Badminton: Tan on hot streak

PETALING JAYA: Project 2010-12 shuttler Tan Chun Seang dashed the hopes of Bukit Jalil Sport School's Chan Kwong Beng to win the men's singles title of the Asian Satellite Open championships in Singapore yesterday. 

It was the second consecutive title for the 20-year-old Chun Seang, who emerged as the winner at the Vietnam International Challenge in Ho Chi Minh City last Sunday. 

But the third seeded Chun Seang did not have it easy in the final and was taken to three games by a determined Kwong Beng, who was looking to cap a fairy-tale ending to an impressive run. Chun Seng came back from a game down to win the match 16-21, 21-16, 21-10. 

There was a double for Malaysia in the tournament when Khoo Chung Chiat-Chang Hun Pin beat Indonesians Bona Septano-Mohd Ahsan 19-21, 21-10, 23-21 in the men’s doubles final. 

Winning a second consecutive title brought much satisfaction to Chun Seang. The Kedahan had been trying to make a breakthrough on the international stage for three years without much success. 

Hitting it right: Tan Chun Seang claimed the men’s singles title in the Asian Satellite Open to add to the Vietnam International Challenge crown he won last week.

“I went through some tough matches from the first round. I was quite tired because we came here immediately after the tournament in Ho Chi Minh City,” said Chun Seang in a telephone interview from Singapore. 

“I was unable to catch his strategy in the first game. But I became confident after he started making a few unforced errors at the start of the second game. There was pressure on me to win but I'm glad to have pulled it off.” 

The back-to-back success should move Chun Seang up the world rankings from number 44. 

“I hope to break into the top 30, which will give me an automatic berth in the main draw of 32 in Super Series tournaments,” said Chun Seang, who is expected to feature in the Thailand Open next month. 

The 19-year-old Kwong Beng, who moved up to number 205 from 403 in the world rankings after reaching the semi-finals of the Vietnam meet, expressed mixed feelings over the defeat. 

“I never expect to go this far. But as an unseeded player it was tough going all the way. I knew it would be difficult if the match went to the rubber because my legs were giving up on me,” admitted Kwong Beng, who now trains under national coach Misbun Sidek. 


Final results  

Men's singles: Tan Chun Seang (Mas) bt Chan Kwong Beng (Mas) 16-21, 21-16, 21-10. 

Men’s doubles: Khoo Chung Chiat-Chang Hun Pin (Mas) bt Bona Septano-Mohd Ahsan (Ina) 19-21, 21-10, 23-21 

Women's singles: Jun Jae-youn (Kor) bt Bae Joo-youn (Kor) 21-8, 21-8. 

Women's doubles: Ha Jung-eun-Kim Min-jung (Kor) bt Pushpita Richi Dili-J. Yulianti (Ina) 21-18, 21-12. 

Mixed doubles: Cho Gun-woo-Kim Min-jung (Kor) bt Yoo Yeon-seong-Ha Jung-eun (Kor) 21-19, 21-13.