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Saturday, August 13, 2022

Top seeds win Singapore Open premier titles

Alex Wan
Alex Wan
Alex Wan is an avid squash lover who writes, photographs, plays and coaches when he is not making a living with his Finance degree.

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Ivan Yuen and Teh Min Jie win premier titles in Singapore
By Alex Wan – Squash Mad Asian Bureau Editor

SINGAPORE – Ivan Yuen and Teh Min Jie both justified their top billing at the 2016 Old Chang Kee-Marigold Singapore Open as both walked out victories in their respective men’s and women’s premier finals. Ivan Yuen dethroned defending champion Ong Beng Hee in straight games, while Teh Min Jie beat Philippines Jemyca Aribado in four games.

In the earlier match of the afternoon, Teh Min Jie had to overcome early match jitters to come back from a game down. She had started the match disastrously, finding the tin six times in the 11-2 loss. Credit should also go to the Filipino number one as she capitalized any opportunity that was presented and finished off clinically.

In the next game, Min Jie played a far more composed game to extend and construct the rallies better. Her patience was rewarded handsomely as she manages to win the next three games, and match, rather comfortably.

Teh Min Jie (front) controlled the T for most of the match against Jemyca Aribado

In the Men’s Premier, defending champion Ong Beng Hee, who won two five-setters yesterday, found the going too tough against his younger opponent Ivan Yuen. The pair played an entertaining match akin to an exhibition match to a highly appreciative audience.

In the first game, Beng Hee, who was once coaching Ivan, seem to know exactly where his opponent would hit each time, anticipating so well each time. But as the game went on, it was evident the former world number 7 was not able to sustain the pace imposed on him and fizzled out 11-6.

The opening of the second was explosive and the first rally was easily the best, with both players taking turns to attack and retrieve. The second and third game ended in a similar fashion as Ivan controlled the rallies and came out winning 11-4 in both of them.

Ivan Yuen (right) proved too much for defending champion Ong Beng Hee
Ivan Yuen (right) proved too much for defending champion Ong Beng Hee

Sixth seed Win Tangjaitrong surprised top seed Kenny Foo to win the Men’s Masters 1 (over-35) in four games. In the Men’s Masters 2 (over-45), Shane Hagan’s fine run came to an end in the last hurdle after losing out to Peter Hill in straight games.

In the junior events, there was plenty of joy for the locals as Au Yeong Wai Yhann and Sneha Sivakumar both won their finals in the Girls under-19 and under-17 events. In the other age groups, Malaysia’s British Junior Open champion Jessica Keng won the under-15 while Miriam Cheng won the under-13.

Girls' under-17 champion Sneha Sivakumar (left) with under-19 champion Au Yeong Wai Yhann
Girls’ under-17 champion Sneha Sivakumar (left) with under-19 champion Au Yeong Wai Yhann

In the boys events, the Malaysian camp dominated as Andrik Lim won the under-13, Kiven Shanmugam the under-15, and Siow Yee Xian the under-17. Local hopes were rested on Kojiro Tan, but he lost narrowly against Hong Kong’s Chan Wui Ki.

Pictures by Singapore Squash Rackets Association


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