Ng On-yee

Super Typhoon Mangkhut worries prompt world champion Ng On-yee to call home – she hopes her UK win will lift Hong Kong spirits

The 27-year-old says she called home to make sure her family was OK before beating Kenna 4-1 to retain her UK Championship title in Leeds

PUBLISHED : Monday, 17 September, 2018, 5:39pm
UPDATED : Monday, 17 September, 2018, 10:36pm

Hong Kong’s Ng On-yee admitted her mind was thousands of miles away in typhoon-battered Hong Kong as she stormed to her second straight LITEtask UK women’s snooker championship title in Leeds.

And she hopes her latest victory helped to put a smile, however small, on the faces of Hongkongers who are battling crowds and delays on the MTR and other forms of transport on a dreary Monday.

Ng took to the table for the final against England’s Rebecca Kenna on Sunday as Typhoon Mangkhut was at its most fierce with the No 10 signal hoisted in Hong Kong.

“I’ve seen lots of coverage and photos on the internet while in Leeds,” Ng told the South China Morning Post. “I did make a few phone calls to make sure the family was safe back home before the final.

“Hopefully my win can bring a little positivity to a blue Monday and cheer up those struggling to get to work and return home.”

The 27-year-old world number one and world champion beat Kenna 4-1 in the final after breezing past Thailand’s Ploychompoo Laokiatphong and fellow Hong Kong player Jaique Ip Wan-in without dropping a frame.

Her victory enabled her to hold on to the number one spot while Kenna rose to number three in the world behind Reanne Evans.

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Although Ng put in an impressive performance against the world’s leading women’s players, she told her coach afterwards that she was not entirely happy with her form.

“It was a great start to the new women’s season for On-yee,” said coach Wayne Griffiths. “The result was exactly what she was looking for to maintain the momentum from last year and to tighten her stranglehold on the world number one spot.

“Myself and other coaches Alan Wong and David Roe have been working through some small technical improvements of late and this defence of her WLBSL UK crown will hopefully give her the confidence to build on moving forward.

“As is often the case with On-yee, she mentioned she thought that she could have played better. However, this is the sign of a real champion, as they can often find a way to win at the highest level, even when things may not be close to 100 per cent.

The UK championship not only confirmed Ng’s status as the best female player in the world but also enhanced Hong Kong’s already strong standing as a global snooker power for women.

Ip finished third after losing 4-0 to Ng in the semi-finals while Ho Yee-ki reached the quarter-finals for the first time.

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Also reaching the last eight was Wan Ka-kai, whose run helped her maintain her place in the world’s top six.

Ng’s next event is on the WSA Challenge Tour in Derby before she and her Hong Kong teammates take part in tournaments in Belgium and Australia in October before the IBSF world championships in Myanmar in November.