Singapore breaks Korea stronghold

20th November, Guangzhou: Cherie Tan, Geraldine Ng and Shayna Ng broke the Korean stronghold to bag Singapore's first gold medal of the 16th Asian Games at the end of the Women's Trios second block on Saturday evening. Korea, who have won two gold medals from the Singles and the Doubles event, looked set to win their third after the Choi Jin A-Hwang Sun Ok-Son Jun Hee threesome had led the first block with a 40 pin margin yesterday over their nearest rival, Singapore.

But the mighty Koreans stumbled to an aweful 544 in their opening game of the second block while Cherie Tan-Geraldine Ng-Shayna Ng scorched the lanes with a superb 664. Japan's Misaki Mukotani-Mako Nakano-Kanako Ishimine surged ahead to take up second, 70 pins adrift.

Singapore kept their momentum going with 631 as Japan continued to trail the leader still 65 pins away. Korea made back some grounds to move up to third, 4 pins behind the Japanese trio.   Singapore were drawn in the same lanes with China's Yang Suling-Chen Dong Dong and Zhang Yu Hong and as the Chinese were in hot pursuit bosltered by the large group of supporters, the leader never looked intimadated.

Four countries were strong contenders but is was Singapore, who came out on top finishing with 611 and a total of 3917 to clinch the gold medal. Korea settled for the silver with 3849 while China overtook Japan to snatch the deserving bronze medal with 3841. "The feeling is awesome, "said the delighted anchorwomen Shayna Ng, who threw away the gold medal in the Singles event with a low game. "This win more than made up for that disappointment.

But more importantly, we get to win one gold medal each. Cherie was simply awesome so was Geraldine. Without both of them, we could not have achieved it."

"The girls stayed calm and focus despite the intense competition," said head coach, William Woo, who was behind the trio throughout this block. "They deserved the victory. This will certainly raise the spirit of the team and look forward to more medals."

Japan lost the chance to win their first medal with a disastrous final game of 548 as Malaysia stormed home to snatch fourth place with 3820 but missed the podium by 21 pins.   Hwang Sun-Ok stretched her lead in the All Events standings to 188 pins with 4094 over her compatriot, Son Jun-Hee in second with 3906. Maki Nakano dislodged Choi Jin-A for third with 3885 as Cherie Tan and Geraldine Ng moved up to fourth and fifth with 3857 and 3840.

Meanwhile, Singapore men could not emulate the success of the women. Basil Low-Jason Yeong Nathan-Remy Ong combination could only finish 13th position with 3693 while Ng Tiac Pin-Benjamin Ng-Mark Wong ended in 19th position with 3620.

First block leader of Choi Bok Eum-Choi Kong Kyu-Jang Dong Chul brke the ice to win the men's first gold medal with 4061. Hong Hae Sol-Cho Young Seon-Suh Sang Cheon combination gave Korea a one-two finish to claim the silver with 3952.   Qatar took home the bronze medal with 3908 while China missed the podium with a fourth place finish with 3853. Jason Yeong-Nathan is in eighth in the All Events with Remy Ong in 18th position.

Choi Bok-Eum and Choi Kong-Kyu occupied the top two positions with 4122 and 4067 followed by Indonesia's Ryan Lalisang in thrid with 4026.

The Team of 5 first block of 3 games over long oil will be contested on Sunday, November 21 and the second block on Monday, November 22 to determine the winners.

Detailed scores: Women's Trios Block 2 | Men's Trios Block 2. Photos by Terence Yaw in Guangzhou.