There were no surprises on the first day of the ROBOT Badminton Asia Mixed Team Championships 2017 yesterday, with all the powerhouses cruising in their opening assignments.
China, Malaysia, Thailand, Korea and Japan each chalked up 5-0 wins in their group ties over Hong Kong, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Singapore and Philippines respectively.
Vietnam were close to taking their first match against Thailand in Group C. The Men’s Doubles duo of Bao Minh/Duong Bao Duc were involved in a humdinger of a contest against Kittinupong Kedren/Nipitphon Phuangphuapet. From 17-all in the third game it was neck-and-neck; the Thais saved a match point before converting their own third opportunity to give Thailand the lead at 21-18 17-21 24-22.
Busanan Ongbamrungphan made it 2-0 winning her Women’s Singles over Vu Thi Trang 21-15 21-18 before Suppanyu Avihingsanon (featured image) overcame veteran Nguyen Tien Minh 24-22 21-9. Jongkolphan Kititharakul/Rawinda Prajongjai (Women’s Doubles) and Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Sapsiree Taerattanachai (Mixed Doubles) won their matches in just over 20 minutes to give Thailand the 5-0 sweep.
Korea were tested in their first match of Group D by Singapore. Terry Hee/Loh Kean Hean narrowly lost 25-23 21-18 to Choi Solgyu/Kim Gi Jung in Men’s Doubles. Sung Ji Hyun eased past Grace Chua (Women’s Singles) and Jeon Hyeok Jin made it 3-0 over Ryan Ng in Men’s Singles.
Chang Ye Na/Lee So Hee (Women’s Doubles) needed just 23 minutes to get past Ong Ren-Ne/Crystal Wong. Singapore had their chances to take the last match. Danny Bawa Chrisnanta/Tan Wei Han had four match points against Yoo Yeon Seong/Kim Ha Na (Mixed Doubles) but could not convert; the Koreans pulled away for a 18-21 26-24 21-14 victory.