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Asian Championships: Chen Hong Captures Men's Singles Crown

** This NEW SHUTTLENWS report is presented by YANG YANG Badminton Products and their Ontario (Canada) agents - SHAH Enterprises **

September 19, 1999 (NEW SHUTTLENWS) - Chen Hong of China captured the men's singles crown at the Asian Badminton Confederation championships when he defeated Malaysia's Ong Ewe Hock in the final today at the Kuala Lumpur Badminton Stadium in Cheras, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Chen, the 20-year old up-and-comer who captured the Swedish Open title in March of this year, outplayed the more experienced Ong in a 33-minute championship match and won by a score of 15-11 and 15-8.

Chen played aggressively from the start against the Malaysian. Ong though was able to defend against the Chinese player's attack in the early going and managed to inch ahead in the first set 5-3. Chen's jumpsmashing and quickness at the net then began to find the weak spots in Ong's defense and the Chinese player was soon on an even standing at 6-all.

Chen kept up his aggressive style, while Ong began to sputter with several mistakes. Chen moved ahead to a 9-6 advantage and stayed ahead the rest of the first game 12-9, 13-11 and finally 15-11 despite a last-gasp effort from Ong.

In the second set, Chen again banked on his jumpsmashes and tight net shots to race away to an early 7-1 lead. Ong did not help his cause any in this stretch as he hit the shuttle long several times.

The Malaysian settled down for a while and, with about 2,000 Malaysian fans in the stands cheering him on, mounted a comeback. He closed the gap to just two points at 8-10. Chen though bore down and once again his aggressive play broke through the tiring Ong's defenses. Chen scored five times to finish Ong off and bag his second major international title of 1999.

For his efforts, Chen also received a purse of US$10,000. Ong pocketed the men's singles runner-up's prize of US$7,000.

Ye Zhaoying of China took the women's singles title and a US$6,000 champion's purse. She defeated teammate Zhang Ning 11-8 and 11-5 in the championship match to win her fifth Asian women's singles crown.

Zhang received US$4,000 as women's singles runner-up.

Women's doubles world champions Ge Fei and Gu Jun of China beat Ra Kyung Min and Chung Jae Hee of Korea 15-8 and 15-10 to bag a third ABC title for the Chinese team.

Ge and Gu took home the champion's purse of US$7,000, while Ra and Chung had to settle for the silver medals and US$5,000.

Men's doubles world champions Kim Dong Moon and Ha Tae Kwon trounced Zhang Jun and Zhang Wei of China to add the 1999 ABC title to their collection of gold medals, as well as a purse of US$12,000 to their pockets.

The unrelated Zhangs shared the runner-up's prize of US$8,000.

Kim was a double 1999 ABC champion. In the first final of the day, he combined with Ra Kyung Min to defeat Liu Yong and Ge Fei of China in mixed doubles 15-7 and 15-13. Kim and Ra are also the reigning world champions.

As mixed doubles titleists, Kim and Ra shared a US$5,000 prize. Liu and Ge split US$3,000.

(Editor's Note: Most Asian players do not get to keep all of their prize money. Depending on the country, a certain percentage is retained by the player's national association to pay for travel and training expenses.)


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