Story by Hariharan Rajandeeran. Photos by Lai Jun Wei/Red Sports
Masahiro Tan (ACSI) returns a shot to RI’s Khoo Jie Xiong. (Photo 1 © Lai Jun Wei/Red Sports)
Bedok Sports Hall, Tuesday, May 18, 2010 – Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) emerged champions in the A Division Boys’ Badminton Championship after beating traditional rivals Raffles Institution. An era of RI dominance was brought to an end as the ACS flag flew high at the end of a thrilling final. RI, who had the championship trophy since 2003, conceded 3-2 to ACS(I).
The first singles game played between them saw RI come out tops. RI’s Khoo Jie Xiong took the first set 21-13 with ease but ACS(I)’s Masahiro Tan Ching Tat made him work for the point in the second set. The set was brought to deuce five times, before Jie Xiong ended the game 26-24.
The first doubles match was a close encounter between the two. RI won the closely fought first set 24-22, but ACS (I) was the better side in the second set, winning 21-18. But trouble struck just before the third set was played when ACS(I)’s Chew Jing Hao, seemed to have trouble with his ankle. He braved the pain and continued the third set, eventually winning the game 21-19.
ACS(I)’s Yoka Larsory Susanto then cruised to victory in the second singles game against RI’s Sivananda s/o Rajananda with an easy 2-0 (21-6, 21-5) win.
The second doubles game played allowed RI to keep alive their hopes of retaining the championship. Although ACS(I) started well in the first set, RI’s duo of Wayne Goh and Poon Jey-Sng came back stronger and went on to win the set 21-14.
RI continued their form in the second set, but ACS(I)’s Gideon Wong and Rheza refused to sit back and brought the fight to RI. At the break, RI only had a one point lead over ACS(I). But RI seemed to be in the driving seat subsequently as they went on to win the set 21-17.
With both schools having won two games apiece, it was down to the third and final singles game that was taking place. One could only imagine the pressure on the players as the sports hall went silent with all eyes fixated on the lone game being played.
The third singles match was a closely fought one with RI’s Shayne Tan Shen Yan leading 11-10 at the break. However, ACS(I)’s Chong Ming Jing returned from the break with fire in his eyes as he took control of the game to win the first set 21-15.
In the second set, Shayne seemed to take control. However, unforced errors brought him down. Ming Jing refused to let Shayne runaway with the lead and stayed close. The turning point of the game came when Ming Jing came from behind to draw 14-14.
The next point won by Ming Jing proved crucial as it gave him the momentum to extend his lead to eventually win 21-17. As the final point was won, the entire ACS(I) team rushed onto the court and piled on an ecstatic Ming Jing leaving a dejected Shayne to tread off the court.
Ming Jing shared, “I just told myself to enjoy the game and go for it, and I did!” Speaking for the team, he said, “ We knew that we would win this year. We moved up as one from the C division and knew that we had the ability to win this”.
Teacher-in-charge and coach Mr Samuel Sim shared on the passion of his team. Being a former ACSian and school badminton player himself, he said, “Both the Raffles and ACS (I) boys grew up together and are good friends. But on the court, the rivalry is fierce. The team just wanted to break the RI streak.”
Commenting on the boys’ loss, RI teacher-in-charge, Mr Wong Chu Lin said, “AC were the stronger team. I would like to congratulate them, but we will come back stronger next year!”
In the 3/4th place matches, Jurong Junior College beat Anderson Junior College 3-0 to secure third place alongside their girls’ team.
JJC’s Wang Fan won the first singles match after three sets were played out with AJC’s ever-persistent Wilgene Tan. Conversely, the doubles match was a fairly easy win for JJC as JJC’s Cheong Jia Quan and Tang Ting Hui swept aside AJC’s Immandira and George Lam 2-0 (21-12, 21-15).
AJC’s Lim Ren Huai made JJC’s Chen Yi Ming work his socks off in the third set, but the latter managed to claim victory in both sets, sealing the match 2-0 (21-15, 21-17).
ACS(I) 3 RI 2
Masahiro Tan Ching Tat (ACSI) lost to Khoo Jie Xiong (RI) 2-0 (13-21, 24-26)
Chew Chin Hao, Andrew Ong Zhi Ren (ACSI) def Lim Boon Tiong, Foo Yong Sheng (RI) 2-1 (22-24, 21-18, 21-19)
Yoka Larsory Sutanto (ACSI) def Sivananda s/o Rajananda (RI) 2-0 (21-6, 21-5)
Gideon Wong Xian Jun, Rheze (ACSI) lost to Wayne Goh Wen Ti, Poon Jey-Sng (RI) 2-0 (14-21, 17-21)
Chong Ming Jun (ACSI) def Shayne Tan Shen Yan (RI) 2-0 (21-18, 21-17)
JJC 3 AJC 0
Wang Fan (JJC) def Wilgene Tan (AJC) 2-1 (21-17, 13-21, 21-16)
Cheong Jia Quan, Tang Ting Hui (JJC) def Immandira, George Lam (AJC) 2-0 (21-12, 21-15)
Chen Yi Ming (JJC) def Lim Ren Huai (AJC) 2-0 (21-15, 21-17)
Lee Xin Yan, Cheng Shun (JJC) – Lim Setia Emanto, Jacky Soo (AJC) – did not play
Kim Byunk Duk (JJC) – Denning Tan (AJC) – did not play
ACS(I) Team List
Masahiro Tan Ching Tat, Chong Ming Jun, Gideon Wong Xian Jun, Chew Jing Hao, Shaun Tan Zhi Yang, Yoka, Larsory Sutanto, Tjioe Samuel Nugroho, Rheza, Andrew Ong Zhi Ren, Sim Tien Wen Joseph, Toh Jin Sheng Samuel
RI Team List
Lim Boon Tiong, Sivananda s/o Rajananda, Foo Yong Sheng, Khoo Jie Xiong, Matthew Tjoa Song Lin, Wayne, Goh Wen Ti, Lim Kai Jie Bryan, Lim Kay Wee Elvis, Poon Jey-Sng, Roy Lim Ruey, Shayne Tan Shen Yan
Jie Xiong had a hard second set as he was worked by Masahiro. (Photo 2 © Lai Jun Wei/Red Sports)
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