Schools sports: Raffles Institution retain both A Division badminton crowns

Raffles Institution's Hannah Tay in action at Toa Payoh Sports Hall on May 19, 2017.
Raffles Institution's Hannah Tay in action at Toa Payoh Sports Hall on May 19, 2017.ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
 Raffles Institution's debutant Suyash Chand makes a last-ditch save to the delight of his coaches.
Raffles Institution's debutant Suyash Chand makes a last-ditch save to the delight of his coaches.ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH

SINGAPORE - Raffles Institution (RI) completed a clean sweep of both boys' and girls' Schools National A Division badminton titles for the second year running at Toa Payoh Sports Hall on Friday (May 19).

The two finals went down to the wire with opponents Anglo-Chinese School Independent [ACS(I)] and River Valley High School (RVHS) putting up fierce displays.

In the boys' final, RI saw off a spirited ACS(I) comeback to eke out a 3-2 win.

The Rafflesians took the lead after Chew Wei Lun won the first match against ACS(I)'s Lu Wei Tian winning 22-20, 21-10.

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Doubles pair Andy Kwek and Neo Wei Jie then extended RI's lead to 2-0, winning both sets 21-12 against ACS(I)'s Bryan Tan and Tan Cher Kian.

But ACS(I) then captured the following singles and doubles matches to take the score to 2-2.

Javier Tan bounced back from a first-set defeat (12-21) to win the next two sets 21-11, 21-18 against RI's Everard Ong.

Tan Gien and Peck Ern Wen levelled the scores, brushing aside RI's Zachary Low and Amos Khan to win 21- 15, 21-18.

The title was finally decided in the last singles match when RI debutant Suyash Chand breezed through with a 21-10, 21-12 victory against Marc Chien to give RI the championship.

In the girls' final, which was a repeat of last year's edition, the two teams were neck and neck until the last singles match.

RI's Hannah Tay overcame an initial 0-9 deficit in the first set to win 21-18. She then romped through the second set, winning it 21-3 to ensure RI retained their crown.

ACS(I) captain Bryan praised his team for putting up a tough fight and conceded that the better team won.

The 18-year-old added: "Coming to the final was a target for us, winning was a bonus."

RI captain, Everard felt that Raffles deserved the victory. When asked what hopes he had for his junior team-mates he said: "I hope they continue to work hard for the sport they love, do their best...achieve the same feat as this year and continue to win double champs."