GLASGOW (AFP) - Defending champions Malaysia reached the Commonwealth Games badminton team final on Sunday but only after an epic 3-2 victory in the best of five rubbers semi-final against Singapore.
Chan Peng Soon and Lai Pei Jing scraped past Danny Chrisnanta and Vanessa Neo in a 17-21, 21-12, 21-14 decider win as the whole tie went down to the final game.
“The first set we were a bit worried but in the second set we felt better and did not think much about it being a decider,” said Lai.
“The crowd were very supportive.” “We just stuck to the strategy,” added Chan, after the pair came from behind to win the 67 minute final match that brought an exciteable crowd at the Emirates Arena to its feet at the conclusion.
“We are now even more confident about winning in the final after this game even though we know it will not be easy.” The first of two semi-finals - the other being England v India later on Sunday - was always a closely fought affair.
Wee Kiong Tan and Wei Shem Goh were able to get the better of the luckless Chrisnanta and parter Chayut Triyachart in the opening men’s doubles rubber 21-17, 18-21, 21-16. But Xiaoyu Liang levelled up with a two-game victory over Jing Yi Tee, 21-12, 22-20 to square the tie.
Chong Wei Feng, arguably the most senior member of the side with a world ranking of 20, was comfortably the most impressive performer of the match as he beat Derek Wong 21-9, 21-18.
Shinta Mulia Sari and Lei Yao ensured matters went into a decider with a battling 21-9, 21-18 success against Khe Wei Woon and Vivian Kah Mun.
Chong did not underestimate the importance of his victory as he readies himself for a week where he expects to challenge in the men’s singles event that follows this week but insisted he had no preference over final opponents in the team competition.
“We needed to win the men’s singles if we wanted to go into the finals with it 1-1 at the time,” he said.
“He was more attacking in the second game.
“The final will be tough no matter who we play - India or England. They are very well balanced.
“I have to maintain my condition, it’s a long tournament but it is so far so good.”