Malaysia win third Games gold in badminton
AFP Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 12:04 am TWN
GLASGOW, Scotland -- Malaysia secured a third successive Commonwealth Games gold medal in the mixed teams badminton with a 3-1 win over England in Glasgow on Monday.
They trailed after the first rubber with Chris Adcock and Gabrielle Adcock beating Chan Peng Soon and Lai Pei Jing 21-14, 28-26 in the mixed doubles.
But Chong Wei Feng pulled them level with a 21-17, 19-21, 21-19 win over Rajiv Ouseph in the men's singles in 71 minutes.
After pulling level in the second game, Ouseph led in the third by 11-7 but then lost eight of the next nine points as Chong pulled off a key victory.
Tan Wee Kiong and Goh Wei Shem were always in control as they beat English duo Chris Adcock and Andy Ellis 21-19, 21-17 in the men's doubles, which included several controversial line calls.
Tee Jing Yi then made short work of a 21-16, 21-17 win over Sarah Walker in the women's singles as Malaysia, without injured men's world number one Lee Chong Wei, took the gold.
Malaysia coach Jeremy Gan felt that Chong's win over Ouseph was crucial to the victory and maintains that he always had faith in the team despite the absence of Lee.
He said: "I always thought we would win a medal but I didn't know what color. The turning point was the men's singles. I knew that if we won it would give my players confidence and if we didn't it would put us under pressure.
"Before we came here we lost our top men's singles player but I still believed this team could make it.
"We had the second best men's player and the best doubles. There are only two players here from Delhi. It is a new team which I think can achieve things."
Chong admitted that he felt huge relief when he tied up his win over Ouseph, sinking to his knees when the match was won.
He said: "I had many thoughts. I knew that it was important to win because Malaysia was trailing and I thought I might lose.
"I think I showed mental strength and that is important in badminton."
Ouseph accepted that his loss changed the momentum of the match but believes there are positives to take forward for the individuals in the English team.
He said: "When we started the tournament if you had offered us silver we would have taken it but with the way the match was and with my lead in the third set I'm disappointed at how I let it go.
"That probably shifted the momentum back to Malaysia in the whole team match but I'm really proud of the rest of the team.
"It shows that we can push Malaysia. They were missing their top singles player but on our day we can definitely push them so that's something for us to take forward.
Singapore won the bronze medal earlier, with a 3-2 victory against India.
The men's and women's singles competitions begin on Tuesday, with Chong the favorite to win gold.
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