There is hope for men’s sin­gles, says BAM tech­ni­cal di­rec­tor

New Straits Times - - Sport - RE­PORTS BY FABIAN PETER

THERE is still a glim­mer of hope in the men’s sin­gles de­part­ment, ac­cord­ing to Morten Frost fol­low­ing the con­clu­sion of the Na­tional Cham­pi­onships Un­der-21 (first leg) bad­minton meet in Pe­nang yes­ter­day.

The BA of Malaysia (BAM) tech­ni­cal di­rec­tor be­lieves young play­ers like Leong Jun Hao, Ng Tze Yong and Sim Fong Hau have po­ten­tial, with the next two years be­ing very cru­cial in terms of groom­ing them.

In yes­ter­day’s fi­nal at the PBA Hall in Bukit Dum­bar, Jun Hao, 18, saw off Tze Yong who is a year younger, 21-13, 21-6 to claim the sin­gles crown.

“I think we will have a good year with the men’s sin­gles at the ju­nior level.

“Jun Hao was good, but it was Tze Yong who caught my at­ten­tion. I like the boy and I think he has a very good ap­proach to his game. He is very nat­u­ral and hardly makes mis­takes with his shots.

“The only con­cern is he is a very small — not his height but his mus­cle mass. I see a lot of po­ten­tial in him, he just needs to build on his size,” said Frost, who was also pleased to see S. Kisona bag the women’s sin­gles ti­tle af­ter down­ing reign­ing na­tional cham­pion M.Thi­naah 21-19, 21-17.

“I feel very happy for her (Kisona) be­cause the win comes at a very im­por­tant time. She was so sick (food poi­son­ing) that she did not play at the Na­tional Cham­pi­onships in Perak last month.

“She lost five kilo­grammes and is only now slowly re­gain­ing her strength. It’s a re­ally good win.”

Kisona — whose last ma­jor achieve­ment was a bronze medal at the 2013 Youth Olympic Games in Nan­jing — is hop­ing to win more ti­tles and move up the na­tional rank­ing this year.

“I had no ex­pec­ta­tions com­ing into the tour­na­ment, be­cause I had just re­cov­ered from food poi­son­ing.

“How­ever, I was de­ter­mined to stamp my mark. I had to do some­thing be­cause the last suc­cess I en­joyed was so long ago.

“Thi­naah is a very good player, but I gave my best and that’s how this year is go­ing to be. I want to just give my best at every tour­na­ment,” said Kisona.

FI­NAL RE­SULTS — Men’s sin­gles: Leong Jun Hao (BAM) bt Ng Tze Yong (BAM) 21-13, 21-6; Dou­bles: Ooi Zi HengZainal Abidin Muham­mad Syazmil Id­ham (Ked/Sel) bt Gu­nasalam Sed­drick AwynMohd Shah­ri­man Amir Syazwan Al-Razi (Sab/Per) 23-21, 21-18;

Women’s sin­gles: S.Kisona (BAM) bt M.Thi­naah (BAM) 21-19, 21-17; Dou­bles: Eng Sin Jou-Eoon Qi Xuan (BAM) bt Goh Yi Xuan-Lee Shun Mei (Pen) 21-18, 21-13;

Mixed dou­bles: Chang Yee Jun-Pearly Tan (BAM) bt Ooi Zi Heng-Lim Peiy Yee, Payee (Ked/Sel) 18-21, 21-15, 21-18.

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