Home2018Myanmar's Zaw Lin serves a stunner in Badminton Asia U-15 Championships

Myanmar’s Zaw Lin serves a stunner in Badminton Asia U-15 Championships

It was a day of mixed fortunes for hosts Myanmar on the opening day of the Badminton Asia Junior U-17 & U-15 Championships 2018 at the Mandalar Thiri Stadium in Mandalay on Wednesday.

Myanmar Badminton Federation (MBF) secretary Nyan Lwin lamented on the tough draw for the Under-15 hopefuls Zaw Lin Htoo and Henin Htut in the singles before their matches got underway.

Zaw Lin, however, served a pleasant surprise to give the home fans plenty to cheer with a gutsy performance to march into the second round when the 14-year-old came back from a game down to upset Thailand's fifth seed Pawin Pongpittakul 7-21, 21-13, 21-12 in a 39-minute encounter.

Zaw Lin will now face India's P. Velayutham in the second round after the Indian fought back from losing the first game to prevail 19-21, 23-21, 21-15 against Japan's Sora Ogaki in 57 minutes.

While the home fans celebrated Zaw Lin's win it was a disappointing exit for young 12-year-old Hein Htut who fell in straight games 21-12, 21-8 defeat to Indonesia's Jason Christ Alexander. 
Still, Hein, the crowd's favorite and ever smiling earned the cheers despite the defeat to the eighth-seeded Indonesian.

Myanmar's Indonesian head coach H. Didit hailed Zaw Lin's victory for his "never say die" attitude, determination and fighting qualities after he lost the first game tamely.

"The fans stayed with and gave him the moral support in the stands. He rewarded them with his comeback win. Many did not expect Zaw Lin to win against the Thai player," said Didit who has a contract with the MBF until June next year.

As for Hein's defeat, Didit said: "He is only 12-years-old but he has is showing good badminton skills. Give him some time and he will be a player to watch."

Another seed to fall in the first round was Akib Solaiman of Bangladesh. The third seed went out tamely to Hong Kong China's Poon Chun Lai 9-21, 12-21 in only 21 minutes.

Meanwhile, top seed Prince Dahal of Nepal, winner of the Dubai International Series in Dubai last week, will go into the fray on Thursday after drawing a first-round bye. 

The 14-year-old will play Singapore's Lucas Saw Wei Hao. The Singaporean downed Vietnam's Nguyen Doc Hong Puc 22-24, 23-21, 21-16.


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