Kian Meng-Pei Jing fail to clinch Singapore Open title

Tan Kian Meng (right) and Lai Pei Jing will next be participating at the 2019 Badminton Asia Championships, which will take place at Wuhan Sports Centre Gymnasium in China from April 23 to 28. (AFP pic)

SINGAPORE: Tan Kian Meng and Lai Pei Jing’s hopes of ending their 27-month title drought did not materialise when they went down tamely in the mixed doubles final of Singapore Open today.

The national pair’s first final since winning at the Malaysia Masters tournament in Jan 2017, saw them play nervously including misjudging several services by their Thai rivals Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattanachai, before bowing out in 21-14 21-6.

“We didn’t think so much (about the title drought). We were really happy to reach the final here,” said Kian Meng when met after the 33-minute match.

The pair will next be participating at the 2019 Badminton Asia Championships, which will take place at Wuhan Sports Centre Gymnasium in China from April 23 to 28.

The pair are now ranked 26th from 38th two weeks ago following their remarkable turnaround.

“The opponents played really well at the same time we played not really good today,” Pei Jing said when commenting on today’s match which was held at the Singapore Indoor Stadium here.

The unseeded duo in the tournament, which has a total purse of US$355,000, now have an inferior head-to-head record with the Thai world No. 4 pair, winning only two out of their five encounters.