Friday, May 23, 2014

Thomas Cup: Malaysia In Semifinals



NEW DELHI, May 22 (Bernama) -- Malaysia achieved their semifinal target in the Thomas Cup when they ousted Denmark 3-1 in the quarterfinals at the Siri Fort Stadium here Thursday.

Malaysia will meet Indonesia in the semifinals. The last time Malaysia reached the semifinals was in 2010, where the team lost to China.

"Our preparations to meet Denmark was fruitful," national's men's doubles coach Pang Cheh Chang told reporters after Malaysia's quarter-final matches ended.

Malaysia's ace player, Datuk Lee Chong Wei defeated Jan OJorgensen 20-22, 21-14, 21-17 in the opener but first doubles Tan Boon Heong/Hoon Thien How lost to Mads Pieler Kolding/Mads Conrad Petersen in straight sets of 14-21, 18-21.

With the tie level at 1-1, second singles Chong Wei Feng beat Hans Kristian Vigtinghus in 19-21, 21-14, 21-8.

"I have to maintain this (form). The first match I lost as I took a little time to read the opponent's game," said Wei Feng, who is making his Thomas Cup debut.

He has won all his matches here thus far.

Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong then thrashed Carsten Mogensen/Joachim Fischer Nielsen 21-19, 21-13 to bring in the winning point for Malaysia.

"The players followed our advice. So, I feel the Goh/Tan pairing has a good future.

"Their performance has been consistent," said a contented Pang.

As for the semifinal tomorrow, he said the players also had to do their homework on the opponents and that the line up would be decided after discussing with other coaches as well as players.

"For now, We are happy to have delivered the management's target," he added.

Asked if they were inspired to move on to the final, Wee Kiong said:"It is good that we have achieved our target. For the rest it would be a bonus." Malaysia have not been to the final for over a decade now.

The other semifinal is between China and Japan and as for the for Uber Cup, China will be taking on South Korea while India will face off against Japan.

In the Thomas Cup quarterfinals, China beat Thailand 3-0; Japan defeated France 3-1 while Indonesia edged South Korea 3-2.

In the Uber Cup quarterfinals, China beat England 3-0 while South Korea overcome Thailand 3-1, India stunned Indonesia 3-0 and Japan beat Denmark also 3-0.

China are the defending champions for both the Thomas and Uber Cup.

by M. Saraswathi -- BERNAMA

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