Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik’s clinches first world title but Zii Jia’s ‘fairy tale’ run comes to an end

“CONGRATULATIONS Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik for winning Men’s Doubles in Denmark Open 2023!! Please win more straight sets like this one #RoadToGold,” penned Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh on her Facebook page.

The world No. 4 defeated Indonesia’s world No. 14 Shohibul Fikri-Bagas Maulana 21-13, 21-17 in the men’s doubles final at the Jyske Bank Arena in Odense last night en route to winning their first ever world tour title.

Aaron-Wooi Yik had never lost to the Shohibul and Bagas in three meetings previously and continued their fine record when it mattered the most.

The top national men’s doubles pair played aggressively from the beginning till the end by dominating the court well in contrast to their nervous opponents.

In fact, they were able to wrap up the match in 33 minutes unlike their semi-final encounter against local favourites Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen a day earlier when the Malaysians had to come back from a game down before prevailing 16-21, 21-15, 21-15 in 50 minutes.

Soh Wooi Yik (left) and Aaron Chia (Pic credit: HSBC BWF World Tour)

The Denmark Open, a World Tour Super 750 championship, is Aaron-Wooi Yik’s first World Tour title after six finals – including three this season – with the last being the China Open in September. Aaron-Wooi Yik’s success earns them a total of US$62,900 in prize money.

Their last major triumph goes back to Aug 28 last year when they created history by becoming the country’s first world champions in badminton after a thrilling 21-19 21-14 win over three-time winners Mohammad Ahsan-Hendra Setiawan of Indonesia in the final showdown n Tokyo.

In the second round of the Denmark Open 2023 on Thursday (Oct 19), Aaron-Wooi Yik had successfully fenced off the resistance of the “badminton papas” 16-21,21-5, 21-15 in 41 minutes.

Aaron-Wooi Yik’s success also ends Malaysia’s seven-year wait for Denmark Open winners. In 2016, Malaysia topped the men’s doubles podium via Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong.

Lee Zii Jia (PIc credit: Olympics.com)

However, the dream of a double joy for Malaysia failed to materialise as national men’s single ace Lee Zii Jia succumbed to a third successive defeat to China’s rising star Weng Hong Yang in the final.

After a winning streak of nine matches since been crowned the back-to-back Arctic Open 2023 champion in Finland, exhaustion might have had the better oft Zii Jia who is trying to regain his form – and faith of his fans – as he went down tamely to Hong Yang 12-21, 6-21 in just 33 minutes.

Zii Jia takes home a total of US$28,900 in prize money as the runner-up. – Oct 23, 2023

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