MALAYSIA’S Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong have beaten two younger China pairs. Now, they will be out to teach the “big brothers” – Guo Zhengdong-Xu Chen – a lesson.
Yesterday, top seeds Kien Keat-Boon Heong were given an incrediable fight by China’s young pair of Chai Biao-Zhang Nan before they prevailed 21-19, 16-21, 21-15 to reach the men’s doubles final of the Malaysian Open.
They had beaten another young pair Tao Jiaming-Sun Junjie in the second round.
Today, they will take on world No. 7 Guo-Xu Chen, who defeated Indonesians Alven Yulianto-Hendra Gunawan 13-21, 21-13, 21-13 in the other semi-final.
The experienced Chinese pair are the second best in China behind Cai Yun-Fu Haifeng, who had skipped the Malaysian Open.
Kien Keat-Boon Heong were happy to reach their second final in four years.
“We have beaten this pair (Chai-Zhang) twice but they showed a lot of improvement in their game today. “They are more experienced after playing quite regularly in international tournaments,” said Boon Heong.
Yesterday, Chai and Zhang hardly showed any fear against Koo and Tan in the opening game as they romped home at 21-13.
Koo and Tan charged back into the fight in the second game and they kept up their aggressive play in the decider for victory.
“It was good to keep our winning record against them intact. I am not at my best in this tournament but I hope to raise my performance up a notch in the final tomorrow,” said Kien Keat.
Kien Keat said he also suffered a loss in form yesterday.
“I was in better condition on Friday (against Nathan Robertson-Anthony) compared to today. Something was amiss in my game,” said Kien Keat, who did make some unforced errors and sent many sitters for the opponents to tuck away.
However, he has vowed to raise his game in anticipation of stronger challenge from Guo-Xu Chen.
“We will be up against the third Chinese pair in this tournament but Guo and Xu will be the toughest.
They are more experienced and their tactical play is good.
“It is a proud moment to be in the final again. Hopefully, we will be able to bring joy for the country tomorrow (today).”