Kuala Lumpur: Indonesian advanced to the Axiata Cup final even though they settled for a 2-2 draw with Malaysia in the semi-final of 2014 Axiata Cup held in Kuala Lumpur Cheras Stadium on Saturday. The 2012 Axiata Cup Champion Indonesia qualified for the final based on a tournament format which Indonesia had won two more games than Malaysia.
Indonesian Tommy Sugiarto got off to a good start in the opening match against Chong Wei Feng of Malaysia. Sugiarto who were already in Malaysia early this week to participate in the Purple League, came off the court firing by knocking off the Malaysian 21-16 in the first set. However, Sugiarto was given neck-to-neck fight in the second set. Chong Wei Feng, who was trailing 19-20 in the second set saw Sugiarto smashed the shuttle down the side line but the line judge called it in. The unhappy Malaysian disputed the decision, but match referee ruled the decision in favor of Sugiarto. With that controversial line-call, Sugiarto won the second set 21-19 and Indonesia took the lead at 1-0. Chong Wei Feng then threw his racket away, walked off court and ignored repeated calls by the umpire to get back on court.
In the women’s singles match, Ballaetrix Manuputty won the opening set with 21-13, but Tee Jing Yi of Malaysia was not giving up. Tee fought back to win the second set at 22-20, and held on to clinch the decider with 21-19 to level the score at 1-1.
With world No 2 Hendra Setiawan and Mohammad Ahan still in Thailand attending the Thai Glory to The King event, the more experienced Malaysian men’s doubles duo Tan Boon Heong-Tan Wee Kiong cruised to a first set win with 21-10, but lost the second set at 13-21. Tan Boon Heong-Tan Wee Kiong almost blew it in the decider when they gave up 3 consecutive points while leading 20-15 before the they eventually pulled away as the winner with 21-18.
In the last game, mixed doubles Riky Widianto / Puspita Richi Dili double beat host shuttlers, Chan Peng Soon / Lai Pei Jing, with two straight sets, 21-14, 22-20.
Malaysian team manager expressed Rashid Sidek his disappointment after the defeat.
“It’s definitely a disappointed day for us. However, when we played against Indonesia in Jakarta, we lost to them 0-4. We were able to fight up to 2-2 today, it’s an encouraging effort from our players and it’s a good experience for them too,” said Rashid.
Meanwhile, the Indonesia team manager Aryono Miranat was happy for the achievement. “As I predicted yesterday, today is going to be a fifty-fifty game, it’s an exciting tie! Thank God we finally won,” he said.
In another semi-final, Thailand defeated Asia All Star 3-0, and Indonesia will play Thailand in the final on Sunday.
Here are results for the Thailand vs All-Star Asia tie:
Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk (Thailand) vs Hu Yun (Hong Kong) 21-14, 15-21, 21-16
Ratchanok Intanon (Thailand) vs Tai Tzu Ying (China Taipei) 24-22, 20-22, 21-18
Maneepong Jongjit/Nipitphon Puangpuapech (Thailand) vs Manu Attri/Sumeeth Reddy
(India) 15-21, 21-12, 16-21