Mixed Bag for Juniors in Vietnam Tourney

Cambodian players enjoyed some good results in the singles back-draw, but they suffered a few blows in the doubles on Wednesday as they began to imbibe valuable lessons from their first experience of an international event like the ongoing ITF Asia 14 and Under Development Championships in Ho Chi Minh City.

On the second day of this unique competition, which has been designed to give the participants a chance to play as many matches as possible in a short time, Klang Punlok and Leng Sarinreach made the best of the consolation bracket by winning their matches at the Kya Ho Tennis Centre.

While Sarinreach got the measure of Ameen Dhain of Maldives 4-1,4-2, Punlok defeated one of his newly made friends from Macau, Ho Man Cheng 4-1, 4-0.

In the jubilant mood they were in after their wins, Punlok and Sarinreach shuttled their way back to the other tournament venue Phu Tho Tennis Club to join their teammate Sen Sophon and watch him go down in a cracker to Chin Lok.Lam from the Las Vegas of the East, Macau.

Sophon could not cash in on at least four match points and went down 6-2, 3-6 with the match breaker producing a stunning 16-14 verdict for Lam.

After this heartbreaking loss, Sophon returned to the court with his teammate Punlok to take part in the doubles competition.

Unfortunately, the Cambodian pair came up short against a good Sri Lankan combination of Thevan Joseph Perera and Ashen Silva, who won 6-4, 6-0.

Earlier, Sarinreach and his partner from Myanmar Paing Hein Ko were beaten 6-1, 6-0 by Renjen Lama and Bhushan Bajracharya of Nepal.

“This trip to Vietnam is all about learning, and that is certainly happening,’’ Cambodian team coach Phalkun Mam, who is also a member of the Davis Cup team, told the Post yesterday.

“Our boys can hit good shots, but maybe not at the right moments. They can focus at times, but often falter in keeping their concentration for a long duration of time,’’ he noted “But time is what they all have – and hopefully they will use it well to improve, if that is what they really desire,’’ Phalkun Mam said.


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