18th Asian Games Palembang 2018
Malaysia strikes first gold
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22nd August, Palembang: First block leader, Esther Cheah, Siti Safiyah Amirah and Syaidatul Afifah staved off challenges from Chinese Taipei and Singapore in the second block to win Malaysia's first gold medal in the Women's Trios event at the 18th Asian Games Palembang 2018.

Esther Cheah, Siti Safiyah and anchorwomen, Syaidatul Afifah had built up a slender lead of 33 pins from their team-mates, Sin Li Jane, Natasha Roslan and Shalin Zulkifli in the first block earlier today. The trio downed 711 at the start of the second block to extend their lead to 85 pins.

Chinese Taipei's Pan Yu-Fen, Chou Chia-Chen and Tsai Hsin-Yin took over second spot despite only rolling a moderate 672 in their fourth game. Malaysia's other trio stumbled to a low 614 to fall behind the Taiwanese in third.

The pace-setter added 701 in the fifth game as roars and cheers came loud from the Singapore camp. Joey Yeo, Daphne Tan and Bernice Lim fired a stunning 820 in their fifth game to leap frog into third, over-taking the first Malaysian trio.

Esther Cheah, Siti Safiyah and Syaidatul Afifah wiith Malaysia's first gold medal

Chinese Taipei kept their good momentum to stay in second spot with 722. Whilst it appeared that the Singapore trio would pose a threat to the Malaysian leading trio, Cheah, Siti Aafiyah and Syaidatul kept their composure to come home good with 730 to seal the gold medal with 4326.

Cheah rolled 1439, Siti Saifyah 1430 and Sayidatul contributed 1457. Pan, Chou and Tsai returned a final game of 723 to pick up the silver medal with 4255 while Yeo, Tan and Lim knocked down 720 to seal the bronze medal with 4250.

Sin, Natasha and Shalin could not recover from their minor setback to end the second block in fourth position with 4144. Korea's Lee Yeonji, Ryu Seoyeon and Lee Nayoung, who were in the running during the first block, completed the top 5 with 4117.

Host nation's top hope of Aldila Indryati, Nadia Pramanik and Tannya Roumimper finished eighth position with 3976 while the other trio of Alisha Nabila, Putty Armein and Sharon Limansantoso was placed 13th with 3854.

After the first event, Syaidatul Afifah topped the All Events standings with 1457, just 2 pins ahead of Jeoy Yeo in second with 1455. Esther Cheah finished third with 1439 followed by Pan Yu-Fen and Siti Safiyah rounding up the top 5.

The top 16 with the highest pinfalls after the second event of the Team of Six is completed will qualify for the Masters Finals. However, only two per NOC are eligible to qualify for the Masters Finals which is scheduled for August 26 and 27.

Silver medal won by Chou Chia-Chen, Pan Yu-Fen and Tsai Hsin-Yi

The Men will contest their Trios event tomorrow morning with the first block of 3 games over the medium oil pattern abd the second block of 3 games over the long oil pattern in the afternoon. Award ceremony for the Men's Trios will follow thereafter.

Photos by Terence Yaw in Palembang, Indonesia.

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