National team posts unimpressive win in first match of ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14
BANGKOK, (26 SEPTEMBER 2013): Malaysia got off to an unimpressive start at ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14 when they were made to slog for a 15-10, 15-12 win over Japan.
Norshahruddin Mad Ghani, Sahidan Md. Ali and Mohd. Syazreen Qamar Salehan, who were playing together as a combination for the first time, made hard work of their time on court from the start. Despite 18 winners from Norshahruddin, their performance was still below-average, with 19-year-old Sahidan marking his SuperSeries debut with eight service errors.
Team manager Jamaluddin Hassan was understandably far from happy with the overall performance of his team despite their 2-0 win.
“We were very inconsistent and gave away too many points,” he said. “We started the match with two service errors and if Shahidan does not improve his game, we are going to have a problem facing higher-ranked teams and progressing further in the tournament.”
Top seeds Korea, who won the first leg of the SuperSeries in India, were made to slog for their 17-16, 15-13 win over a determined China while Thailand, seeded fourth as hosts beat Iran 15-1, 15-4. The United States, meanwhile, was awarded an automatic 2-0 walkover win over Indonesia.
Malaysia is drawn together with Germany and Japan in Group B while Korea have India and China in Group A for company. Group C has the United States and Singapore while Thailand takes on Iran and Brunei in Group D.
In the women’s competition, fourth seeds Malaysia fell 16-14, 15-11 in their first match to unseeded Korea, but bounced back to beat China 15-8, 15-7.
“It’s a relief to beat China as it increases our chances to qualify for the semi-finals,” said coach Md. Fikri Md. Noor, who used Noor Fairuz Azizan and Nor Farhana Ismail in both matches but replaced striker Rahilah Harun with Nurrashidah Abd. Rashid in the second. “Our loss to Korea, however, was disappointing as it was a keenly-contested match which could have gone either way.”
The opening match of the women’s competition saw hosts and top seeds Thailand easily defeat India 2-0 (15-6, 15-2). Other fixtures of the day saw Vietnam beating Japan (15-3, 15-12) and China being awarded an automatic 2-0 walkover win over Indonesia.
Malaysia is drawn in Group B with China and Korea. Top seeds Thailand are in Group A alongside third seeds Vietnam, Japan and India.
The second leg of the internationally-recognised tournament, September 26-29, features the world’s best men’s and women’s teams in competition at Fashion Island, one of Bangkok’s largest shopping malls.
The ISTAF SuperSeries platform is created by Asia Sports Ventures (ASV) – ISTAF’s exclusive global commercial and development partner. ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14 is supported by local organisers Takraw Association of Thailand (TAT).
The second leg in Bangkok will be followed by ISTAF SuperSeries MALAYSIA 2013/14 in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah from October 31 to November 3. The 2013/14 season kicked off with ISTAF SuperSeries INDIA in New Delhi from August 29 to September 1.
* Note to editor: Malaysia plays Germany today at 7.45pm Bangkok time; updates to come after the match. A recap of all today’s matches not played at Press time will be included in tomorrow’s report.
ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14
Group A: Korea bt China 2-0 (17-16, 15-13)
Group B: Malaysia bt Japan 2-0 (15-10, 15-12)
Group C: USA w/o Indonesia 2-0
Group D: Thailand bt Iran 2-0 (15-1, 15-4)
Group A: Thailand bt India 2-0 (15-6, 15-2); Thailand bt Japan 2-0 (15-9, 15-9)
Group B: China w/o Indonesia 2-0; Vietnam bt Japan 2-0 (15-3, 15-12); Korea bt Malaysia 2-0 (16-14, 15-11); Malaysia bt China 2-0 (15-8, 15-7)
More information on ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14
ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14 is the second round of ISTAF SuperSeries 2013/14. Alongside the ISTAF World Cup, the elite, internationally-recognised ISTAF SuperSeries is the only sepaktakraw tournament recognised by ISTAF and therefore plays a key role in deciding the official ISTAF World Rankings.
In both men’s and women’s competition, only the top two teams from each group advance to the play-off stage based on points accumulated. Unlike ISTAF SuperSeries INDIA, where each match was decided over five sets, group, play-off and quarter-final matches here will be decided in three sets over 15 points. The semi-finals, 3rd/4th placing and final matches will all be played over five sets.
ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14 will be televised on Thailand’s leading network Channel 3. Sports fans throughout the region will get to enjoy almost eight hours of live TV coverage, as well as selected matches featuring the Thai men’s and women’s teams.
All in all, ISTAF SuperSeries THAILAND 2013/14 will be watched by fans in 70 countries.
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