Friday, 25 May 2018 | MYT 12:00 AM
Rexy satisfied with Thai girls’ show as they storm into semis
HOSTS Thailand and Indonesia went the distance in the Uber Cup quarter-finals but behind the scenes, it was a quiet battle between two coaches – Indonesian Olympic champions Rexy Mainaky and Susi Susanti.
But finally it was a victory for Thailand coach Rexy when his girls, led by Ratchanok Intanon, defeated Indonesia 3-2 to reach the semi-finals.
Thailand will take on second seeds and defending champions China in the semi-finals today while top seeds Japan will face off with South Korea.
Ratchanok took just 33 minutes to beat Fitriani Fitriani 21-8, 21-7 to the delight of the home crowd but Indonesia fought back.
Greysia Polii-Apriyani Rahayu and Gregoria Mariska Tunjung gave Indonesia a 2-1 lead by winning their doubles and singles matches.
Spurred on by the homecrowd, Thailand came charging back to win the tie through sensational victories by Puttita Supajirakul-Sapsiree Taerattanachai and Busanan Ongbamrungpan to crush the dream of Susi to lead her girls to their first semi-final in many years.
Rexy, the Thai's performance director was elated with the girls' fighting spirit.
“It's important for the host to have a representatives in the semi-finals and the girls did it.
“It'll be tough against the defending champions but we'll bank on the home support to pull off an upset," said Rexy, who used to coach the Malaysian doubles for seven and half years.
Japan and South Korea suffered a minor hiccup en route to checking into the semi-finals when their top singles players crashed out.
Japan beat Taiwan 3-1 but lost one point through Akane Yamaguchi, who was whipped 21-19, 21-16 by world No. 1 Tai Tzu-ying.
South Korea also dropped a point en route to beating Canada 3-1 when their trump card Sung Ji-hyun lost 14-21, 15-21 to Michelle Li.