Hon Jian-Haikal seal first title at Syed Modi International

KUALA LUMPUR: Choong Hon Jian-Haikal Nazri are the new Super 300 Syed Modi International champions.

On Sunday, the national men's doubles duo, who were only paired up in August, landed their maiden international crown when they upset top seeds and world No. 16 Akira Koga-Taichi Saito of Japan 18-21, 21-18, 21-16 in the final in Lucknow, India.

Having already stunned higher-ranked Mark Lamfuss-Marvin Seidel of Germany and Ben Lane-Sean Vendy of England en route to the final, it was only a matter of time before Hon Jian-Haikal landed their biggest career win to date.

The Malaysian pair's best result before this was reaching the Super 100 Indonesia Masters final in October.

National men's doubles coach Tan Bin Shen had always believed in his charges.

The former international wants the Malaysian players to start believing in themselves.

"From this tournament, we can see that Hon Jian-Haikal have what it takes to beat the top 20 pairs in the world.

"If they continue pushing forward then they will be up there among the best soon.

"The players know this," Bin Shen said.

World No 93 Hon Jian-Haikal pocketed US$16,590 (RM78,000) for their feat, while Koga-Saito settled for US$7,980 (RM37,000).

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