Pearly-Thinnah bow out in style after super human effort not enough to demolish Korean fortress

SO CLOSE yet so far befits Pearly Tan and Thinaah Muralitharan’s fine run in the Perodua Malaysia Masters 2023 finals at the Axiata Areana in Bukit Jalil this afternoon after both shuttlers fought with blood, sweat and tears – literally – but only to concede their first defeat in the tournament to mightier South Korean opponents.

In a pulsating 101-minute trailer – the longest in the six-day Super 500 tournament – the top Malaysian women’s doubles pair was on the verge of creating upset when they took a 20-17 lead in the first game but only for their World No. 6 ranked opponents in Baek Ha Na and Lee So Hee crawling back to take the game 22-20.

But the Malaysians who are currently ranked 11th in the world bounced back in style to take the second game 21-8 to send the match to a rubber game – one which piled tremendous pressure on the body after having toiled 333 minutes (six hours and 33 minutes) on the court since Tuesday (May 23).

This is where the ‘wear and tear’ took immense toll on the Alor Setar-born Pearly and Klang-born Thinaah as evident by the tournament doctor having to step in on a few occasions to attend to cuts and bruises endured by the duo.

Despite being physically drained, both Pearly and Thinaah still fought their way in the rubber game but luck was not on their side as the South Koreans fortress was too strong to be demolished. The Malaysians who were eyeing their third BWF title after the Swiss Open in 2021 and French open last October eventually conceded defeat at 17-21.



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