S Korea dashes Malaysia’s hopes for another gold in bowling

The Malaysian team had to settle for the silver at the Jakabaring Bowling Center. (Bernama pic)

PALEMBANG: South Korea dashed Malaysia’s dream of claiming the gold medal for women’s bowling at the 2018 Asian Games.

The girls had to settle for the silver at the Jakabaring Bowling Center here today.

Shalin Zulkifli, Sin Li Jane, Esther Cheah, Syaidatul Afifah Badrul Hamidi, Siti Safiyah Amirah Abdul Rahman and Natasha Roslan failed to end Malaysia’s 12-year gold drought in the event when they recorded 8,149 pinfalls.

The South Korean team of Baek Sungja, Han Byul, Kim Hyun Mi, Lee Yeonji, Ryu Seoyeon and Lee Nayoung claimed the gold with 189 points advantage with 8,338 pinfalls.

Chinese Taipei’s Pan Yu-Fen, Chou Chia-Chen, Tsai Hsin-Yin of Chinese, Chang Yu-Hsuan, Wang Ya-Ting and Huang Chiung-Yao took the bronze with 7,969 pinfalls.

Earlier, in the first block (long oil) of three games, Malaysia, the 2017 Las Vegas World Champions, were in second place with 4,024 pinfalls, 67 points behind the Koreans.

They managed to reduce the deficit to 17 pins in the fourth game, but the Koreans showed their prowess to increase the lead all the way towards the end for the gold.

Malaysia only claimed gold in the team event (previously team of five) once during the 2006 Doha Games, where Esther and Shalin are the only two keglers to still remain in the squad, while at the 2010 Guangzhou edition, Malaysia claimed bronze.

On Wednesday, the women’s trio of Esther, Syaidatul Afifah and Siti Safiyah Amirah claimed the first gold for Malaysia in this Games, ending a 24-year drought in the event at the same venue on the first day of competition.

Yesterday, the men’s trio of Rafiq Ismail, Timmy Tan Chye Chern and Ahmad Muaz Mohd Fishol also won the silver.