KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 2 — The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) might soon be able to count on women’s singles shuttler, Goh Jin Wei to defend her SEA Games gold in Manila.
The 19-year-old, who was reported to have mysterious stomach ailment since April, might be back to her full force soon to feature at the biennial Games.
However, BAM’s coaching director Wong Choong Hann said the two time junior World Champion’s return to the competitive match is still pending medical clearance.
“We will know once we get the final green light pretty soon, but not at this moment. We are just getting her ready in the best manner possible,” he told reporters after the deputy Chef-de-Mission (MCD), Nurul Huda Abdullah’s visit to the badminton squad at the Academy Badminton Malaysia here, today.
Jin Wei is the country’s sole gold medalist in badminton at the 2017 KL SEA Games, while Malaysia has also won five silver and two bronze medals.
Meanwhile, Choong Hann is optimistic that the national squad will be able to give a good fight in the team events, though not the favourite for the gold medal based on current rankings.
In the individual event, the former world number one admitted that men’s singles shuttler, Lee Zii Jia would be facing an uphill task from the likes of world number six, Jonatan Christie and Anthony Sinisuka Ginting (8) of Indonesia as well as Thailand’s Kantaphon Wangcharoen.
“Jonatan will be the strongest opponent among all the nation besides Kantaphon, so it will be an interesting challenge for Zii Jia, but not impossible.
“Off course it is an uphill battle, his improvements are still ongoing. We do hope he can continue his fine form and create some nice upsets there,” he said.
Malaysia is set to send 20 shuttlers for the biennial Games, as badminton would take place from December 1-9 at the Muntinlupa Sports Complex, Manila.
BAM in August had named Zii Jia, Soong Joo Ven, Aaron Chia, Soh Wooi Yik, Teo Ee Yi, Ong Yew Sin, Goh Soon Huat, Tan Kian Meng, Aidil Sholeh Ali Sadikin and Lim Chong King in the men’s team.
The women’s team will be featured by Jin Wei, Soniia Cheah, Lee Ying Ying, S. Kisona, Chow Mei Kuan, Lee Meng Yean, Vivian Hoo, Yap Cheng Wen, Shevon Lai and Lai Pei Jing. — Bernama