Badminton: Malaysia's Teck Zhi crowned Asian junior champion

Badminton: Malaysia's Teck Zhi crowned Asian junior champion
KOTA KINABALU: Malaysian shuttler Soo Teck Zhi clinched the Asian junior title after a hard fought victory over South Korea's Jin Jeon Hyuk in the 100PLUS Badminton Asia Youth Under-19 Championships, here, today.

Teck Zhi who becomes the second Malaysian to win the crown after Zulfadli Zulkifli, beat the Korean 21-17, 13-21, 21-15 to win the men's singles title.

Zulfadli had achieved the feat in 2011 under the Kuala Lumpur Racquet Club.
An elated Teck Zhi revealed afterwards that the win made up for missing the championship last year due to a clash of dates with the ASEAN Schools tournament which he went on to win.

"I have waited for this tournament for a long time and to finally compete and win it is a marvelous feeling. I'm extremely happy," said Teck Zhi, after the prize presentation ceremony.

Teck Zhi produced a confident display in the opening set, using his most potent weapon - jumping smashes - to overwhelm his ninth seeded opponent but the 18-year-old lost his momentum in the second to allow Jeon Hyuk back into the game.

"I had problems with the wind in the second set and part of it (defeat) was due to me making mistakes. It was much better in the third set because I had already read his game and tried to play to his weakness," said the fifth seeded Teck Zhi.

Teck Zhi added that his next target was to win the Badminton World Federation's (BWF) World Junior Championships in Bangkok, Thailand later this year. "I made the quarterfinals in 2012, so I will train harder and try to do even better this year. I have the confidence to do it," Teck Zhi added.

In the women's category, Japan's Aya Ohori, seeded number three here, won the women's singles title after beating Thailand's top seed Ongbamrungphan Busanan 21-11, 19-21, 21-13 in the final.

100PLUS, which currently has Olympic silver medallists, Datuk Lee Chong Wei and Pandelela Rinong and also national football players, Safee Sali, Khairul Fahmi and Safiq Rahim as its Brand Ambassadors and a strong supporter of Malaysian sports, was the main sponsor of the championships.