The BSU12 Jr GP qualifiers consists of 20 players from Peninsular and 4 players from Sabah and Sarawak. Here are their round robin groupings and my personal opinion on who will top the group to enter quarter final.
Little is known about the zone C champion Muhd Izzan (SB), and it is anticipated to be a tight battle between him and Derrick Eng (JH) to lead the group. Surprisingly, it was underdog Chun Zhen Tai (PK) who upset both the higher profile players after learning that Muhd Izzan suffered a stiff neck and Derrick was slightly under the weather.
Zone B second leg champion Chia Jeng Hon (PH) is a no brainer here to lead this group. The others being Hanz Haiqal (SB) and Teo Hong Kai (SL).
This is also a straight forward pick on the classy Anson Cheong (PK) but I was wrong again. 11 year old Justin Hoh (KL) turned the table around to lead the group after upsetting the highly rated Perak no. 1 and Thaanesh Devar (MK).
This is considered the Group of Death and the biggest shock of the Jr GP was hard hitting Daryl Foo (SL) upset both favourite Ong Zhen Yi (PG) and the promising Ng Yaw Pin (MK) to go through to the quarter finals.
Zone C runners-up Kennyson (SK) was largely tipped to lead the group but Aaron Wong (PJ) worked on his game to get the better of both Kennyson and Wee Yee Hern (JH).
On paper, silky-smooth Yong Bin Yan (MK) should go through but it was the industrious Beh Chun Meng (PG) who had the better of both Yong Bin Yan and Ng Tze Chian (JH).
Selangor ace Kenny Khew (SL) should lead this group here consist of Goh Boon Zhe (PG) and the diminutive rising star Kimi Ng In Qin (KD) who is only 10 years old this year.
This is another strong group with the tenacious Yap Juin Ann (SL) and Johor top rank Liew Xuan (JH) to battle out for the lead. Yap Juin Ann was expected to meet Penang ace Ong Zhen Yi in the final, so there was no surprises here.
Quarter Final Review
Kenny Khew (SL) vs Daryl Foo (SL)
This is an all Selangor battle for bragging rights. Daryl buoyed from his giant killing feat on Ong Zhen Yi started strongly to take the first set. Season campaigner Kenny Khew fought back to take the second set. In the decider, Daryl was leading 7 – 3 when the game was abandoned due to water leakage from the roof as it was raining heavily. They had to change court and resumed the rubber game where both fought point for point. In the end, Kenny being the more experienced player outlasted Daryl to enter semi final.
Chun Zhen Tai (PK) vs Aaron Wong (PJ)
This is an unexpected pair to reach the quarter final. Both came through almost undetected topping their groups respectively. Zhen Tai in his second GP appearance played a 4-point text book game, took the first set. Aaron changed tactics after the breather and snatched back the second set. In the decider, the game was tense but Aaron held on to secure a gratifying win to enter semi finals.
Beh Chun Meng (PG) vs Justin Hoh (KL)
Another unexpected pair that reached quarter finals where a determined Justin Hoh upset favourite, Anson Cheong (PK) in Group C while Chun Meng had the better of Yong Bin Yan (MK) in Group F. Justin played what would have been his best match of the tournament to edge Chun Meng for the semi-finals.
Yap Juin Ann (SL) vs Chia Jeng Hon (PH)
This match is worthy of the final as Yap Juin Ann was highly rated to enter the finals. However, the Pahang ace, Jeng Hon has been flawless all week and took an unexpected straight set win to go through to the last four.
Semi Finals Review
With both favourites Ong Zhen Yi (PG) and Yap Juin Ann (SL) out of the competition, the semi finals lost some lustre as it took a shape of a one sided match. Both Kenny Khew (SL) and Chia Jeng Hon (PH) had it easy to enter Final.
This is their second Jr GP having debut in 2014. Chia Jeng Hon (PH) earned his first GP Championship after getting the better of Kenny Khew (SL) in 3 games. Jeng Hon has been playing impeccable badminton winning straight sets all the way from day 1. He is the worthy Junior BSU12 GP Champion for 2015! Congratulations Jeng Hon!