Esther, 27, edged Singapore's top seed Kimberly Ooi 204-156 and 220-193 in the women's masters final. She received RM10,500 for her efforts.
"I have never successfully defended a title before... this is my first. I am glad that I have achieved it and the win will inspire me to make an impact on the world meet," said Esther when contacted in Hong Kong yesterday.
"However, I have to admit that I won against a weak field here but a win is a win and I am still delighted. It was a hard-fought final."
Esther, who has recorded six career wins in 'Open' competitions, finished fifth in the eight-game masters by posting lines of 164, 200, 204, 198, 187, 246, 209, 191, 191, 213 for a 2,003 total, averaging 200.30.
In the first match of the stepladder finals, Esther defeated Singapore's Joey Yeo and Tracy See, 210-185-148, to advance to the second stage.
She earned a crack at the title after overcoming Hong Kong's Chan Shuk Han and Singapore's Ilma Nur Jannah, 201-181-178.
With yesterday's win, Esther thus matches Shalin Zulkifli's achievement of back-to-back wins in the Hong Kong Open in 2006 and 2007 but the latter still holds the overall record of three titles with her last win recorded three years ago.
Esther is not known as a strong bowler in 'Open' tournaments but has a knack of producing results in priority events.
*Sumber dari New Straits Times