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India, Singapore create history in BWF Junior Championships 2008

2008-11-04 10:36:00

HOSTS India and Singapore won their first ever gold medals while China’s dominance was dealt a blow when they were restricted to just two gold medals in the Yonex Sunrise-BWF World Junior Championships 2008 in Pune.

India’s gold came courtesy of Saina Nehwal who secured a comfortable 21-9, 21-18 win over Japan’s Sakaya Sato, a feat which bettered the Indian’s silver medal feat in the same championships in Incheon two years ago.

The first game was just one way traffic as Saina showed greater composure and power to run away with an easy 21-9 win. However, in the second game, the Japanese left hander suddenly found her rhythm and began to show the form that brought her a win over China’s No 2 seed Lie Xuerui in the second round.

Sakaya turned defense into attack and often caught Saina flatfooted by switching play from left to right.

Despite trailing 9-16, the Japanese caught up to 14-17 and 18-20 before Saina nailed the game with a smash to the joy of some 2,000 fans.

“I was not able to play in Auckland last year and it was a big disappointment. As such, I was motivated today (Sunday) to give it my all,” said Nehwal.

“She (Sakaya) is a good player but I am just happy to be able to win the title at home in front of all the fans.”

The bronze medals went to China’s Wang Shixian and Thailand’s Porntip Buranaprasertsuk.

While China did not feature in the women’s singles, they were left shocked in the women’s doubles as Singapore’s Fu Mingtian-Yao Lei stunned top seeds Xie Jing-Zhong Qianxin 21-19, 21-17 to give Singapore their first ever World Junior Championships gold medal.

In Auckland last year, Singapore finished third in the mixed team event. However, this year, Singapore finished 12th and Mingtian-Yao Lei’s feat makes up for that disappointment.

Mingtian-Yao Lei, a scratch partnership, showed resolute defence to frustrate the Chinese. It did not help matters for the Chinese that they committed far too many unforced errors which was fully capitalised by the Singaporeans.

China was also frustrated in the men’s doubles when Malaysia’s Mak Hee Chun-Teo Kok Siang lived up to their top billing with a 21-18, 21-14 win over Chai Biao-Qiu Zihan.

“We may be the top seeds but we did not put ourselves under any pressure as the target was to reach the final,” said Hee Chun.

“Once we achieved the target, all we wanted to do was to give it our best shot.”

Bronze medals went to Malaysia’s Chooi Kah Ming-Pang Zheng Lin and Korea’s Kim Dae Eun-Kim Ki Eung.

China’s gold medals came through the men’s singles and mixed doubles, which was obvious, as both were an all-China affair.

In the men’s singles, Wang Zhenming beat Gao Huan (21-13, 21-16) for the title while Chair Biao-Xie Jing beat Zhang Nan-Lu Lu (21-19, 21-15).

In the men’s singles, bronze went to R.M.V Gurusaidutt of Idia and Lee Dong Keun of Korea.

In the mixed doubles, Mak He Chun-Vivian Hoo (Malaysia) and Korea’s Kim Ki Jung-Eom Hye Won.

(Credit: BWF)