Koreas grabbed three titles at the SCG Thailand Open that concluded yesterday, with ageless wonder Lee Hyun Il winning his third Grand Prix Gold this season.
Lee (featured image), who won the Yonex Sunrise Malaysia Masters and Skycity New Zealand Open this year, held off young Indonesian Ihsan Maulana Mustofa, 21-17 22-24 21-8, for the Men’s Singles crown.
Lee’s compatriots Sung Ji Hyun (Women’s Singles) and Choi Solgyu/Eom Hye Won (Mixed Doubles) were the other title winners for Korea. Indonesia and China picked up a title each, through Wahyu Nayaka Arya Pankaryanira/Ade Yusuf (Men’s Doubles) and Huang Dongping/Li Yinhui (Women’s Doubles) respectively.
Lee had a comfortable path to the final, quelling the likes of Firman Abdul Kholik (Indonesia), Ng Ka Long (Hong Kong) and Dionysius Hayom Rumbaka (Indonesia) in straight games. He had an opportunity to win the final too in straight games, but after Mustofa edged past him, Lee cruised through in the third. Earlier, Mustofa had accounted for Lee’s compatriots, top seed Son Wan Ho, in the quarter-finals and Jeon Hyeok Jin in the semifinals.
Sung Ji Hyun had little trouble getting past Singapore teen Liang Xiaoyu (above), 21-11 21-14 in the final. Xiaoyu caused ripples in the tournament with her upset of top seed Ratchanok Intanon (Thailand) in the semi-finals, 22-20 13-21 21-17. Another local hope, Porntip Buranaprasertsuk, fell in the second round to Malaysia’s Tee Jing Yi in three games. OUE Singapore Open champion Sun Yu was outplayed by Sung in their semi-finals, 21-10 21-18.
Pankaryanira and Yusuf (above) were taken the distance by Malaysian veterans Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong. The Malaysians won a close first game and even had match point in the second, but the Indonesians wriggled past and claimed the title, 20-22 23-21 21-16.
Earlier, Koo and Tan had beaten Singapore Open champions Angga Pratama/Ricky Karanda Suwardi (Indonesia), 21-19 17-21 21-16, in the semi-finals, while Pankaryanira/Yusuf outclassed compatriots Gideon Markus Fernaldi/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo 21-18 21-16.
Huang Dongping (above)/Li Yinhui brushed aside their first game loss to Korea’s Chang Ye Na/Lee So Hee in the Women’s Doubles final, to prevail 20-22 21-11 21-15. The Koreans had outplayed World Junior champions Chen Qingchen/Jia Yifan (China) in the semi-finals, while Huang/Li proved too good for Korea’s Go Ah Ra/Yoo Hae Won in the other semi-final.
Choi Solgyu/Eom Hye Won (below) clinched the Mixed Doubles title over Indonesia’s Praveen Jordan/Debby Susanto, 21-19 17-21 21-16. The Indonesians had accounted for top seeds Ko Sung Hyun/Kim Ha Na in the semi-finals, 21-16 21-16.