Sunday October 21, 2012
Koo and Tan hold their nerves to edge Boe-Mogensen in the semi-finals
ODENSE: Malaysia’s doubles shuttler Tan Boon Heong held his nerves. And his partner Koo Kien Keat kept his cool.
Together, the duo pulled off one of their biggest wins this year when they knocked out home favourites and Olympic Games silver medallists Mathias Boe-Carsten Mogensen with a 19-21, 21-11, 26-24 in a nail-biting men’s doubles semi-final at the Denmark Open yesterday.
They will take on South Korea’s Shin Baek-cheol-Yoo Yeon-seong in the final today.
Kien Keat-Boon Heong also reached a Super Series final at the Japan Open two weeks ago. Boon Heong was happy that they kept their heads at the crucial stages after cracking so often in similar situations in the past.
“It was one of the most suspenseful matches as we were fighting point for point but this time I did not give in to the fear of losing,” said Boon Heong.
“Usually, I would get all worked up and tense in the closing part but this time, I played confidently,” he said.
The match was a tight affair from the start with both pairs levelled at 19-19 before the Danes – spurred on by the vociferous home fans – pulled away with a win, no thanks to two straight poor returns to the net by Boon Heong and Kien Keat respectively.
The Malaysians restored some order by taking the second game 21-11.
In the decider, both pairs came charging out but surprisingly, the Malaysians made fewer mistakes to troop out the winners.
Kien Keat said a change in their mindset after their failure to win a medal at the London Olympics played a big part in their win.
“Last time, we used to say that we will give our best. Now, we mean it,” said Kien Keat.
“We were relaxed. I was enjoying the match and played without much pressure.
“In the past, we fell apart due to mistakes, pressure and criticism. Now, we have rediscovered that joy of playing togetehr again without having to worry about anything.”
On the final today, Kien Keat said: “It’s good to come this far. It will be nice if we can win the title. It will be great to celebrate together with Lee Chong Wei as he turns 30 tomorrow (today).”
In the mixed doubles, Chan Peng Peng and Goh Liu Ying were a pale shadow of their true selves after losing 7-21, 16-21 to China’s top seeds Xu Chen-Ma Jin in the semi-finals.
There was a major upset in the women’s doubles as Japan’s Misaki Matsutomo-Ayaka Takahashi pulled the rug from under Tian Qing-Zhao Yunlei to win 21-15, 13-21, 21-10 and reach their first ever Super Series final.