Thailand surge to mixed doubles petanque gold

Thailand affirmed their status as South-east Asia's petanque powerhouse by clinching their third gold on June 9, 2015. -- ST PHOTO: JEREMY LIM
Thailand affirmed their status as South-east Asia's petanque powerhouse by clinching their third gold on June 9, 2015. -- ST PHOTO: JEREMY LIM

SINGAPORE - Thailand have won their third petanque gold medal at the 2015 SEA Games after the pair of Sarawut Sriboonpeng and Nattaya Yoothong triumphed in the mixed doubles at the Padang on Tuesday. 

Thailand affirmed their status as South-east Asia's petanque powerhouse to overcome Vietnam's Ngo Thi Huyen Tran and Tran Thach Lam 13-4. Both teams had nervy starts but drew cheers from both sets of fans as they took turns to lead on the scoreboard.

However, the Thais took control of the match and led 10-2 by the first hour and never relinquished the lead. Malaysia and Laos received the bronze after losing to Thailand and Vietnam in the semi finals 7-13 and 10-13 respectively.

Thailand coach Anek Phukok praised his players' mental strength, saying: "We played with some very good opponents but our players were able to play steadily throughout almost two hours."

The victory brought Thailand's petanque medal haul to three golds, which was equal to their haul at the 2013 Games in Myanmar.

But Anek reiterated his country's aim to win at least five golds in Singapore. He said: "Our current results shows that our players are at the top level and we have to be consistent with it."

ljeremy@sph.com.sg

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