Our paddlers eye chance to enter knockout stage

PETALING JAYA: National paddlers kept their hopes alive of advancing to the knockout stage when they defeated Canada 3-1 in a Group 1 match of the World Championships.

Debutant Tee Ai Xin continued to enjoy her debut as she chalked up her third consecutive win when she defeated Jiayie Nie 11-5, 11-8, 11-4 in Chengdu, China on Sunday.

Canada’s Crystal Liu had given her team the upper hand when she defeated Karen Lynn 11–4, 10–12, 5–11, 13–11, 11–8 in the first match but Alice Chang Li Sian helped Malaysia draw level with a 11-9, 11-6, 9-11, 11-8 win over Ivy Liao.

Alice rose to the occasion as she won her reverse singles against Crystal with a 11-4, 9-11, 11-9, 11-7 win to raise hopes of advancing to the last 16.

Malaysia lost 2-3 to Puerto Rico but defeated United States 3-2 in the other two group matches.

China, with three wins from three matches, topped Group 1 with 6 points while Malaysia, with two wins and a defeat, are in second with five points. One point is awarded for a defeat.

Puerto Rico are third in the group with five points but all that would change when the last matches are played today.

Malaysia have an uphill task against China while Puerto Rico should move up to second place as they are expected to overcome the Americans.

However, Malaysia can still sneak into the last 16 as one of the best third-placed teams. Four teams from six groups advance to the knock-out stage with the group winners and runners-up.

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