Sunday, February 21, 2016
TEXT BY DEV SUKUMAR | BADMINTONPHOTO
New Zealand and Australia shared the spoils at the 2016 Oceania Men’s & Women’s Team Championships that concluded in Auckland on Saturday.
The Oceania powerhouses faced each other in both finals, with New Zealand coming away trumps in the men’s team final and Australia reversing that result in the women’s team final.
New Zealand’s win in the men’s team final gave them an all-win record in the group, having beaten Tahiti and New Caledonia earlier. The women’s competition consisted of five teams; Australia won all of their matches, against Guam, Tahiti, New Caledonia and New Zealand.
In what was effectively the final, New Zealand clinched the tie after the first three matches by winning all the singles. Dylan Soedjasa, James Eunson (featured image) and Michael Fowke made it 3-0 for the Kiwis before Australia pulled one back through Matthew Chau/Sawan Serasinghe. New Zealand made it 4-1 in the fifth match when Kevin James Dennerly-Minturn/Oliver Lleydon-Davis stormed past Wesley Caulkett/Robin Middleton 21-11 21-16.
Australia’s women weren’t threatened by New Zealand. Wendy Chen and Joy Lai gave Australia a 2-0 lead but Michelle Chan Ky kept the Kiwis in the hunt by winning the third singles over Jennifer Tam.
Joy Lai/Leanne Choo ensured the tie for Australia winning the doubles 21-9 21-12 over Vicki Copeland/Susannah Leydon-Davis. Wendy Chen and Gronya Somerville completed the rout beating Michelle Chan Ky/Danielle Tahuri 21-12 21-15.
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