A WEAKENED Malaysian team turned in a fighting display before bowing out 3-1 to China in the mixed team semi-finals of the Asian Junior Championships in Gimcheon, South Korea yesterday.
National junior boys’ champion Soong Joo Ven, who played a pivotal role in Malaysia’s quarter-final win over Thailand, was left out yesterday due to a wrist injury.
His replacement Tan Kian Meng, however, failed to raise his game.
BA of Malaysia junior programme coordinator Haw Kim Tho said Joo Ven felt pain in his right wrist on Sunday.
“After evaluating his injury, our coaches decided to rest after three tough days of badminton,” said Kim Tho yesterday.
“I hope the rest will help him recover in time for the boys’ singles event which starts tomorrow (today) as he is one of our medal contenders.”
Chow Mei Kuan-Tan Wee Gieen could have given Malaysia a good start in the mixed doubles but lost their nerve in the third game and succumbed to Zhang Ningyi-Huang Yaqiong 21-13, 19-21, 22-20 in 55 minutes.
Song Xue earned China’s second point with a convincing 21-18, 21-14 win over Kian Meng in the boys’ singles.
But Darren Issac Devadas-Tai An Khang managed to reduce the deficit by overcoming Pei Tianyi-Wang Yilv 8-21, 21-17, 21-15 in 40 minutes.
Sun Yu clinched China’s winning point by disposing Lim Yin Fun 21-12, 21-13.
China will face Japan, who beat South Korea 3-1 in the other semi-final, for the title today. By Ajitpal Singh