Soon Hock-Thien How move into semis


KUALA LUMPUR: The scratch combination of Ong Soon Hock-Hoon Thien How kept up their good run in the Indonesian Open at the Istora Senayan in Jakarta yesterday, scoring an upset win over Denmark’s Mathias Boe-Cartsen Morgensen to reach the men’s doubles semi-finals.

And doubles chief coach Rexy Mainaky wants to see the good results being complemented with good attitude. He hopes that Soon Hock would have a change of attitude for him to be considered in a regular partnership with Thien How.

In the quarter-finals, Soon Hock-Thien How put up a great fight to beat the Danes 27-25, 20-22, 22-20 in 69 minutes. The victory came followed their elimination of fourth seeds Shintaro Ikeda-Shuichi Sakamoto of Japan the previous day.

They will play against the vastly experienced American-Indonesian combination of Tony Gunawan-Candra Wijaya today for a place in the final.

Tony-Candra defeated top seeds and world champions Markis Kido-Hendra Seiawan of Indonesia 21-18, 18-21, 21-10 yesterday.

Personal problems resulted in Soon Hock parting company with Tan Bin Shen last month and the latter was teamed up with Khoo Chung Chiat.

“The problem with our players is that one or two wins will get to their heads. They enjoy the praises so much that they lose focus. I have seen this from so many players, including Soon Hock and Bin Shen. They got big headed after they reached the semi-finals of the China Masters last year,” said Rexy.

“Soon Hock is a good player but he must control his behaviour on the court. Soon Hock and Bin Shen have done well with their younger partners, both at the Singapore Open last week and at the Indonesian Open.

“But the Malaysian players must know that good results alone are not enough. They must also be players with good attitude. I hope Soon Hock will change for the better following his good performances in these two tournaments.”

Besides Soon Hock-Thien How, Singapore Open champions Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif-Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari also advanced to the semi-finals, beating Indonesians Mohd Ahsan-Bona Septano 21-12, 21-12.

They will take play against unheralded South Koreans Ko Sung-hyun-Kwon Yi-goo today for a place in the final.

In the men’s singles, the sole Malaysian survivor in the quarter-finals, KLRC Bhd’s Lee Tsuen Seng, crashed to a 15-21, 16-21 defeat by Indonesian Simon Santoso.

In the women’s doubles, Chin Eei Hui-Wong Pei Tty, who are seeking a boost ahead of the Beijing Olympics in August, went down 15-21, 15-21 to Indonesians Lilyana Natsir-Vita Marissa yesterday.


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