Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean advance to India Open final

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Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean one win away from clinching the India Open. (photo: Money Sharma/Afp/Getty Images)
Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean one win away from clinching the India Open. (photo: Money Sharma/Afp/Getty Images)

New Delhi: Malaysia’s World No. 17 women’s doubles shuttlers Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean have moved into the final of the India Open on Saturday as they came through a grueling semi-final encounter with No. 3 seeds Jongkolphan Kititharakul/Rawinda Prajongjai of Thailand 18-21, 21-19, 21-19 in 73 minutes.

After losing the first set 18-21, the No. 3 seeds from Malaysia were falling behind 14-19 in the second set, and were not expected to win the tournament. Chow/Lee then led a frantic rally, reeling off seven consecutive points to mount an incredible comeback with a 21-19 second set win.

The third set was a neck-and-neck battle, with the score tied for 10 times. Chow/Lee then held their nerves to see off Kititharakul/Prajongjai 21-19 in the decider.

Malaysia’s women’s doubles coach Rosman Razak praised Chow/Lee’s fighting as a key component of their success.

“They both worked very hard in the semi-final. Their attacks were strong and were very consistent, but definitely still have much room for improvement,” said Razak.

It will be a tough test for the Chow/Lee in the final as they will face Indonesia’s No. 1 seeds Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu on Sunday.

“They will need to stay focused and prepare for another difficult game in the final,” said Razak.

“Hopefully they will be fully prepared and try to make a surprise in the final action,” added Razak.

Chow/Lee did play Polii/Rahayu once at the World Championships last year which saw them lost to the Indonesian pair 18-21, 13-21.

Meanwhile, the women’s singles semi-final between home favorite PV Sindhu and He Bingjiao of China played at frantic pace as both players were engaged in long rallies, pushing each other to all four corners of the court. Sindhu eventually failed to overcome He Bingjiao and made a disappointing exit from the tournament after a 21-23, 18-21 loss.

The Chinese player will take on Ratchanok Intanon in the women’s singles final on Sunday. The No. 4 seed Thai player was made to work before prevailing 21-15, 19-21, 21-18 over Han Yue of China in 69 minutes.

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