KUALA LUMPUR (8 January 2017): Puchong United Badminton Club (BC) are thanking their lucky stars and will be lifted after the SS Purple League (SSPL) 2017/18 Phase 2 draw which was held at the Sports Arena Sentosa, Old Klang Road earlier today.
The top 6 teams - Puchong United BC, Ampang Jaya BC, Kepong BC, Cheras BC, Petaling BC and Petaling Jaya BC were drawn into 2 groups of 3 teams and they will play an extra two games as they get another crack at improving their previous respective Stage 1 positions. It will also determine the seeds for the SSPL 2017/18 Finals draw.
In Group A, Phase 1 leaders Puchong United BC were drawn alongside Cheras BC and defending champions, Petaling Jaya BC. Puchong United BC recorded big wins against both clubs in their previous meetings but team manager, Irina Inozemtseva is not taking anything for granted.
“The top 6 teams possess their own unique strengths to challenge for the SSPL title. Plus, now the transfer window is open so teams can bring in players to improve their squads. We are looking at a few players ourselves,” said Irina.
“I hope my players can keep their focus even though we have a big lead at the top. As I told them before, we must not underestimate our opponents and we must always be at the top of our game,” Irina added.
Ampang Jaya BC, who finished second in Phase 1, will also face uphill battles of their own as they were pitted with Kepong BC and Petaling BC in Group B. Ampang Jaya BC eeked past Kepong BC (12-11) in Phase 1 but were dealt a heavy defeat in the hands of Petaling BC (6-12).
All Phase 2 matches will be played at Sports Arena Sentosa, Old Klang Road from the 26th to 28th January 2018.
The top 6 teams will then move on to the knockout stage in Arena of Stars, Resorts World Genting from the 8th to 11th February 2018 with the top 2 receiving byes to the semi-finals round.
Meanwhile, Serdang BC and Bangsar Hawks BC will also participate in Phase 2, but only in the 7th/8th Playoff match at the same venue on the 27th January 2018.