Singapore girl ends drought with victory

28th September, Singapore: Gina Lim Sim Hui ended a two year drought with a victory in the Youth Girl's Masters title of th 40th Singapore International Open while Ernie Cheng reclaimed the Boy's crown he won in 2005.

Malaysia's Fatin Syazliana opened account with a 234 in the first game but was soon overtaken by teammate, Christyn Chew after the second game with Singapore's Gina Lim following closely behind in third.

A scintillating high game of 266 moved the 16-year-old Singapore Sports School youngster to the front of the pack with a 46 pins cushion after third game. The champion kept a strong pace maintaining the lead right up to the eighth game when Christyn Chew took over the lead briefly.

Gina sealed the victory with 233 and 212 in the final two games for a total of 2069 whilst her nearest opponents failed to score higher. Fatin snatched second spot with 2043 with teammate, Christyn settling for third with 2026.

Meanwhile, Ernie Cheng Hsing-Chao of Chinese Taipei, reclaimed the Youth Boy's title he won in the 2005 Singapore Open after the 17-year-old amassed a total of 2112 in the 10-game finals.

While the Singapore youths fought out the lead in the early stages, Cheng only surged into the lead after the seventh game and went on to claim the victory. Singapore's Stanley Ong, who was trailing the Taiwanese, settled for second with 2041.

But the star of this morning's finals was undoubtedly Mark Wong Jee Mun. The national intermediate squad member posted the tournament's fifth perfect game during the finals. But crucially, the first in the Masters finals as he stood to win S$10,000. The first four perfect gamers had shared the $10,000 perfect game award just for the qualifiyng rounds while a fresh award was up fro grabs.

"Sure I was a bit tense towards the 10th and 11th frames but by the time I got to the last frame and knowing there was $10,000 on the line, I put all my focus and energy to bring back a good shot," said the delighted Mark, who celebrated his second career perfect game. His first came during the national schools championship two year ago.

The Men's and Women's Senior titles went to 56-year-old Denny Koh and Yeo Soo Yong. Koh totaled 2023 to pip veteran campaigner and 2005 Singapore Open champion, Jack Wong and Steven Tan in second and third.

Yeo also finished ahead of ex-international and previous Singapore Open champion, Patty Hor on a total of 1781 to win her first-ever senior crown. Patty knocked down 1759 to take second followed by Indonesia's Tine Sopaheluwakan in third a further 1 pin away.

Photos by Terence Yaw.