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Sunday, October 7, 2007

Spotlight on Pair: Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong

Winning the All England, Malaysian Open, Swiss Open, and Philippines Open titles in less than a year of formation is indeed impressive. Apart from that, after their finals performance in the Macau Open, they are the new world number 1. So what identifies this new pairing from others?
As always, successful badminton pairings have contrasting personalities: Rexy Mainaky was the explosive one. Ricky was the shyer one. Cai Yun is the confident one. Fu Haifeng is the more reserved of the pair.

Indeed, Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong do have contrasting personalities too: Kien Keat is the 'obnoxious' one on court while Boon Heong appears to be, in relation to Kien Keat, more reserved. When Kien Keat did his little jig when he got a matchpoint at the All England finals, this no doubt irked many badminton fans. Many accused Kien Keat of being unsportsmanlike and arrogant. Many despise his antics and label it as obnoxious stunts. So is Kien Keat really this obnoxious monster we know on court?

Kien Keat himself begs to differ. On his blog, he begs everyone to be aware that these are just badminton mind tactics employed by all top pairs. In real life, he claims, he is a nice and easy going guy. In a sense, I do agree with him. Mind games on the badminton court excite viewers; they are a indescribable aspect to this game. They give us the much needed drama on court... so whats wrong with it? Accept it people - mind games, including those little 'stunts' by Kien Keat bring the whole court to live.

Boon Heong on the other hand, earned him some Malaysian haters after their shock lost in the Quarter Finals of the World Championships. Missing an easy half court smash at match point, they went on to lose the game. After the matches, profanities were screamed and shrieked at Boon Heong, who sat by the court wiping his tears, immediately extending his apologies to Kien Keat. Since then, however, he has bounced back in the still ongoing Macau Open, scalping the highly regarded Korean pairing of Jung Jae Sung/Lee Yong Dae and exterminating the reigning world champions and world number 1 Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan. Hence, it appears that this pair is out of their slump, and are ready to achieve greater heights for Malaysia.

Another recent news regarding this relatively new pairing is the conflict between Kien Keat and Boon Heong. While conflicts between partners are not new news for Malaysian badminton fanatics, this still intrigues and fuels our interest. Since the days of the bickering pair of Cheah Soon Kit and Soo Beng Kiang, we have grown used to the fightings and the disagreements of our players. Still, these pair have always managed to deliver: Soon Kit and Beng Kiang delivered the winning point for our triumph in the 1992 Thomas Cup. It remains to been seen whether Kien Keat and Boon Heong can better Soon Kit and Beng Kiang's achievements and win the Thomas Cup for Malaysia again.

As always


Anonymous said...

Cheah Soon Kit and SOO BENG KIANG

vchi said...

anonymous: changed :D

L2 said...

what is KKK's blog url?