Angus Ng Ka-long immediately sets his sights on All England title after disappointment in German Open final
Hong Kong number one moves on swiftly from disappointment in German Open final against Chou Tien-chen, of Taiwan
Hong Kong’s Angus Ng Ka-longmissed out on his first championship title of the year after losing to Chou Tien-chen of Taiwan, in the final of the German Open last weekend.
In the singles final of the World Tour Super 300 tournament in Mulheim, 23-year-old Ng could not muster the knowhow to conquer his older opponent in an exhausting three-setter when he was beaten 21-19, 18-21, 21-18 after a 84-minute duel.
The runner-up came through two gruelling battles in previous rounds and was fully extended before overcoming two leading Chinese players in two-time Olympic champion Lin Dan and Shi Yuqi, currently the second highest ranked mainlander behind Rio Olympic champion Chen Long.
“It’s a pity as I came so close to taking my first title of the season,” said Ng, the current world number nine. “I could not handle [the pressure] well enough in the third game and allowed my opponent too many chances.
“It’s over now in Germany, but the All England Open is coming up and I have to stay focused for better results.”
Ng enjoyed the luck of draw in the World Tour Super 1000 tournament which offers a total winning purse of HK$7.8 million.
He was drawn against world number one Viktor Axelsen of Denmark in his opening match on Wednesday, a player Ng has never beaten in five previous encounters. But it was later reported the Dane would need to undergo leg surgery and will miss the first Super Tour event of the year.
Chinese mainlander Qiao Bin, the world number 28, is his likely replacement.
“I was a bit down when I first saw the name of Axelsen in my draw – I knew it would be very difficult,” said Ng before his departure to Germany.
“But Qiao is also a quality player and beat me at the Taiwan Open two years ago. There is no easy game at the top level and you always need to be at your best if you want to win,” he said.
Hong Kong’s Tse Ying-suet and Tang Chun-man are seeded third in the mixed doubles and it will be interesting to see what the pair, who have surged to prominence over the last 12 months, can come up with under the pressure of competing at the world’s oldest tournament.
But all eyes will be on two veterans at Birmingham Arena as mainlander Lin, who is pursuing his seventh All England title, is due to renew his battle against long-time rival Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, who has also secured four titles, in the quarter-final stage.