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ABF Tour - Thailand 2006 Page 1 | 2 | 3
Double celebration for Malaysia

29th April, Bangkok: Shalin Zulkifli and Zulmazran Zulkifli gave Malaysia a double celebration as the duo won both the Women's and Men's title of the ABF Tour Thailand Leg held over one day at S.F. Stirke Bowl, Bangkapi Mall.

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The women's title was Shalin's second consecutive title in two days emulating the feat acheived by Alex Liew last year when he took the Indonesia Open and the ABF Tour Indonesia leg with the women's title incidentally also won by Malaysia's Lai Kin Ngoh.

The two-time Asian Ranked No. 1 and four-time Malaysian Sportswomen of the Year, defeated local Thai challenger, Panumart Srisuapipit, 222-199 to claim the Thailand Leg i the women's division. The newly-crowned Thailand Open champion and top-seed, ousted compatriot and tour bedutant, Nor Atteya Zainal Abidin, 229-183 to reach the semifinals.

The champion then went on to outclassed one of three Thai semifinals, Saruta Songserm, 238-168 to book her spot in the finals. "As soon as I started in round 1 and immediately got very comfortable with the line, I

Women Champion
Shalin's back-to-back title in Bangkok

knew I had a strong chance of taking the title," said the delighted 28-year-old ex-national.

"I hope that the back-to-back win will give me the much needed confidence for the World Ranking Masters in Kuwait next month. I'll be competing in the Kuwait Open in the first week of May and it will be a good tune up for the all-important championship," added Shalin.

The runner-up, Panumart had knocked out Thai national bowler and World Youth Singles Gold medalist, Angkana Netrviseth, 244-219 in the other semifinals before finding Shalin too strong to handle.

The men's title went to Zulmazran Zulkifli giving Malaysia another well deserved double. The 22-year-old was in his element throughout the leg stinging crucial wins to reach the finals. The champion took the title after defeating Korea's Oh Young-Ki, 244-226 to claim his second ABF Tour title. Zulmazran's previous tour title was the Malaysia leg in 2005.

"Although I had easy wins in Round 1 and 2, the semifinal win was the turning point and I knew I could take the title," said the beaming champion. "I had to strike home in order to have any chance of reaching the finals and luckily for me I did.

The runner-up, Oh Young-Ki of Korea, could not repeat the form he showed in the first semifinal match when he defeated compatriot, Kong Byoung-Hee, 258-172 to reach the finals while Zulmazran edged Thailand's only mmen semifinalist, Kritchawat Jampakao, 207-194 in the second semi.

Men Champion
Zulmazran Zulkifli winning his second tour title

ABF Tour next stop will be in Kuwait on the 8th May, just a day before the World Ranking Masters 2006 which will be held at the same venue. The ABF Tour 2005 comprises 8 Legs and a Grand Final. Top 16 men and 16 women bowlers from the preceding International Open Masters Event (Open Grade) will be qualified and competed in a one-game match play knock-out competition for the individual men's and women's titles.

Highlights of the ABF Tour - Thailand will be televised later on local television stations of the eight countries where the tour is being held. It is also broadcast later from parts of Europe, Africa, the Middle East, central Asia, China and Australasia with an estimated audience of around 90 million.

For further information and details please contact ABF Tour Committee Marketing and Event Management Division at Tel: (852) 2810 5191; Fax: (852) 28105192; Mr. Ritchie Lai (Mobile: (852) 93598669; email: ritchie.lai@tndgroup.com or Mr. Kelvin Pong (Mobile: (852) 9100 0958; email: Kelvin.pong@tndgroup.com or by visiting ABF Tour official website: www.abftour.com".

Photos by Terence Yaw, MTBC.

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