Yeo concludes hectic spell with U-19 win

National badminton player Yeo Jia Min ended a breathless, three-week stretch of tournaments on a triumphant note yesterday.

The 17-year-old shuttler clinched the Jaya Raya Yonex Sunrise Junior Grand Prix (Under-19) title in Jakarta by beating third-seeded South Korean Kim Ga Eun 21-19, 21-19.

The rising star had toppled the top seed and world No. 42 Pornpawee Chochuwong of Thailand 21-15, 9-21, 21-17 in the semi-finals.

Said Yeo, who is 10th in the world junior rankings: "The toughest part was when I had to (find ways to) overcome (my opponent) during the match and had to think of ways to make a breakthrough, especially after losing a game."

It was a sweet finale for Yeo, who was spent just two days at home in the past three weeks, as she played earlier in the India Junior International Badminton Championships in Pune and the Yonex Sunrise Indonesian Masters in Balikpapan.

She said: "This win will give me another boost of confidence for the World Junior Championships."

There are just four Junior International Grand Prix events this year, and they are a tier higher than the Junior International Series.

The victory gave Yeo her second badminton title of this year, having won her first career singles crown at the Vietnam Open Grand Prix in July, which earned her the nod as The Straits Times Star of the Month award winner in the same month.

She returned late last night, and will spend two weeks at home before she leaves again for her next series of tournaments, the Oct 4-9 Thailand Open and the Oct 11-16 Chinese Taipei Masters.

The full-time shuttler said: "I'll probably treat my coach, team-mates and family for a meal, and then go back to training."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 19, 2016, with the headline 'Yeo concludes hectic spell with U-19 win'. Print Edition | Subscribe