GENTING HIGHLANDS (9 FEBRUARY, 2017): Puchong United BC lived up to the billing as one of the heavy favourites to win the SS Purple League 2016/17 after displaying some eye-catching performances in their big win (11-5) over Ampang Jaya BC during their SSPL 2016/17 1st-6th preliminary match today at the Arena of Stars, Resorts World Genting.
Puchong United’s Chinese Taipei international, Chou Tien Chen got the ball rolling for his team with a straight sets win (11-9, 11-8, 11-6) in the first men’s singles match. It was a debut to forget for his opponent, Indian international Ajay Jayaram who was making his first appearance for Ampang Jaya this season.
Current world Number 1, Tai Tzu Ying who was also making her first SSPL 2016/17 appearance replicated her countryman’s feat by overcoming a stubborn Xu Wei of Ampang Jaya 3-2 (11-2, 8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-5) in 30 minutes.
Ampang Jaya managed to stay alive in the match as their men’s doubles pair, Lukhi Nugroho and Muhammad Syawal overcame the odds to defeat Puchong United’s pair of Lim Khim Wah and Tan Chee Tean 3-2 (8-11, 11-10, 11-6, 10-11, 11-7).
However Puchong United wrapped up the game in style as their new signing, Christinna Pedersen alongside Korean international Yoo Yeon Seong won their mixed doubles match with ease. Christinna and Yeon Seong were clearly a class above Ampang Jaya’s Desiree Siow and Tan Yip Jiun, winning 3-0 (11-8, 11-4, 11-5).
Puchong United will now meet Stage 1 winners, Muar BC in tomorrow’s semi-final.
I am delighted with the performance today however our women’s singles and men’s doubles have much to improve on. But in a way it is good for us because I now know what changes I can make to improve our performance for tomorrow,” said Puchong United’s team manager, Irina Inozemtseva.
“In the elimination stage, there are no weak teams. It is tough in every single point and every single game. The pressure will be immense,” added the Russian.
Meanwhile Serdang BC will meet Kepong BC in the 7th/8th Playoff Match after edging Bangsar Hawks in a tightly contested match earlier today. Both teams could not be separated after five rounds of matches as the game finished 9-9.
However Serdang got the benefit of the doubt as the tournament technical director ruled that the team that accumulated more points wins the match. As a result, Serdang was declared the winner.
The result meant that Bangsar Hawks finished the SSPL 2016/17 campaign at ninth as Klang City BC forfeited the tournament, making them last placed team.
SSPL 2016/17 Stage 2 Results (9 February 2017)
1st-6th Preliminary Match
(4pm) Puchong United BC bt Ampang Jaya BC 11-5
MS1: Chou Tien Chen bt Ajay Jayaram 3-0 (11-9, 11-8, 11-6)
WS: Tai Tzu Ying bt Xu Wei 3-2 (11-2, 8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-5)
MD: Lim Khim Wah-Tan Chee Tean lost to Lukhi Nugroho-Muhammad Syawal 2-3 (11-8, 10-11, 6-11, 11-10, 7-11)
XD: Christinna Pedersen-Yoo Yeon Seong bt Desiree Siow-Tan Yip Jiun 3-0 (11-8, 11-4, 11-5)
7th-10th Classification Match
(12pm) Bangsar Hawks BC drew with Serdang BC 9-9 (Serdang won the match on more points accumulation)
MS1: Chian Chin Yong lost to Sim Fong Hau 0-3 (5-11, 7-11, 4-11)
WS: Crysvia Lim Peiy Zhean lost to Shen Yabing 0-3 (8-11, 4-11, 4-11)
MD: Mohamad Syazmil Idham-Muhammad Amzzar bt Ong Wei Khoon-Ooi Zi Heng 3-0 (11-10, 11-6, 11-6)
XD: Muhammad Aliff Nurizwan-Toh Ee Wei bt Chiam Xue Qi-Tan Jinn Hwa 3-2 (8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-7, 11-6)
MS2: Muhammad Syafiq bt Ooi Swee Khoon 3-1 (9-11, 11-10, 11-8, 11-8)