CambodiaN national tennis player Bun Kenny stormed into the semifinals of the Tanimex Open Regional Prize Money Tournament in Ho Chi Minh City yesterday after a well-crafted 6-3, 7-5 victory over long standing Malaysian No 1 Si Yew-Ming.
The victory for Bun Kenny came against the odds on a hard court that stayed true and challenging as he moved on to today’s clash with Vietnamese top ranker Do Minh Quan for a place in the final.
Do Minh Quan was a finalist at the 2009 Tep Khunnah Memorial tournament in Phnom Penh after a semifinal victory over Cambodia’s two-time SEA Games bronze medallist Tan Nysan.
“It is a tough semifinal encounter, but going by the way he has been shaping in the last few weeks he can really make a match of it,” national head coach Braen Aneiros, who was courtside yesterday watching the action, said in a telephone conversation with The Post.
20-year-old Kenny, who has jumped nearly 300 places to his current ITF world ranking of 1,402nd after grabbing his second ATP point last month, consistently found a good range and rhythm from the baseline. He often deceptively mixed up the pace to exact unforced errors from the Malaysian.
“In the last year, we have completely re-worked Kenny’s service motion to an easier and more effective delivery mode and he is just beginning to feel a lot more comfortable and confident on his serves. It is a very good sign,” said Aneiros.
“This is a non-ranking prize money event so he wont be getting any points here, but our hope is that Kenny will end the year with at least three or four ATP points.”
On the way up to his best ever finish in a tournament of this stature, Bun Kenny was totally unsparing in his first two rounds. He swept aside local lad Cran Minh Dang 6-0, 6-2 in the first round before easing past Thailand’s Grittaboon Prahmanee 6-1, 6-3.
“We at the [Tennis Federation of Cambodia] are understandably thrilled with the result,” said TFC Secretary General Tep Rithivit, who has made a snap decision to travel to Ho Chi Minh City in time to watch Kenny’s semifinal.
“He deserves that kind of support from us and, as you are well aware, we are craving for a winner. This is the best shot any Cambodian player has had after those thrilling SEA Games moments from Tan Nysan [in 2007 and 2009].”