Malaysia stormed into the Commonwealth Games mixed team final after beating England 3-0 in a showcase of sheer confidence, and will face either Singapore or defending champions India for the gold medal on Tuesday.
The mixed doubles action started this semi-finals showdown, with the new combination of Chan Peng Soon-Cheah Yee See surprisingly preferred over the more experienced Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing.
It was a gamble that paid off, as the Malaysians romped to a 12-21, 21-18, 21-13 victory over world number 11 pair Marcus Ellis-Lauren Smith.
Chan-Cheah’s first-game loss, however, ended an 18-game winning streak in the mixed team event that started from the first group encounter against Zambia on Friday.
Nonetheless, the pair recovered in the second game and crucially surged ahead with the scores locked at 18-18 for the win.
Fuelled with confidence, Chan-Cheah dominated the deciding game over the English pair who began to concede rash points in their attempt to find a way back.
The Malaysians eventually sealed the deal to take the crucial opening point, and next it was Ng Tze Yong who entered the fray in the men’s singles against Toby Penty.
Perhaps a weight off his shoulders with Malaysia in the lead, Ng was calm and confident against Penty, using the opportunity to showcase a different repertoire to his game that included delightful net play mixed with cross court kills.
Ng went on to secure a 21-13, 21-14 success, paving the way for men’s doubles Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik to seal the deal against Ben Lane-Sean Vendy.
The Tokyo Olympics bronze medallists duly delivered with a hard-fought 21-17, 21-18 triumph to secure the straightforward passage into the final.
The victory also meant Goh Jin Wei and Pearly Tan-M.Thinaah were not needed in the women’s singles and doubles.
In the 2018 edition mixed team final, Malaysia lost 1-3 against India.