KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 19 – Thailand lived up to their top billings when they defeated Malaysia 3-0 in the final round-robin match of the Men’s Team Regu competition held at the Titiwangsa Stadium on Saturday (19 Aug), denying the hosts’ mission to end its 26-year drought in the competition.
For Thailand, the win is proof of their domination in the event, their 12th consecutive gold medal achievement since 1993 Singapore SEA Games. Indonesia took the silver after defeating Brunei 3-0 in another match played at the same venue. Malaysia and Brunei each shared the bronze. Therefore, the early signs of defeat were also evident the following the defeat of Malaysia’s first regu- Farhad Adam, Hanafiah Dollah and Syahir Rosdi.
The homesters lost 21-15, 21-17 to the Thailand’s trio of Pattarapong Yupadee, Pornchai Kaokaew and Jantarit Khukaeo. The Thais second regu of Assadin Wongyota, Anuwat Chaicana and Sittipong Khamchan followed suit with a 21-10, 21-6 victory over Safarudin Abu Bakar, Said Izwan Said and Muhamad Norhaffizi Abd Razak.
The third regu of Somporn Jaisinghol, Thawisak Thongsai and Kritsanapong Nontakonte completed the rout with an easy win over Syazreenqamar Salehan, Meor Muhamad Zulfikar Mat Amin and Azlan Alias 21-9, 21-8. Thailand coach Thawat Kumutpongpanich said soon after the match: “Actually, the defining moment was the win by our first regu. It has made our work easier. Had we lost, I’m sure the scenario would be different,” he said.
Malaysian captain, Syahir Rosli apologise to the local fans and spectators , saying that the defeat at the hands Indonesia had affected the team. “We’ve tried our level best. The defeat to Indonesia has taken a toll on us, we lost concentration…perhaps, we had underestimated Indonesia’s capabilities. We will try to make amend in the regu competition,” he said.