Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Aiming for perfect 10

MALAYSIA OPEN: Chong Wei focused on getting back on winning trail

LEE Chong Wei has forgotten about his Korea Open failure and is fully  focused on winning an unprecedented 10th Malaysia Open at Putra Stadium come Sunday.

   Chong Wei, who was soundly beaten by China's World No 2 Chen Long in Seoul, has the distinction of being the first men's singles player to have won the same international tournament the most number of times. Adding a 10th title will be his goal when the tournament proper starts today.

     Chen Long could once again prove to be the stumbling block as he is likely to meet the Malaysian in the final but Chong Wei is more concerned about his earlier matches with China's other players.

   Chong Wei, who will focus more on the major events this year, is expected to meet Wang Zhengming in the second round and Du Pengyu in the quarter-finals. Both are from China.

   Chong Wei must then overcome either Jan Jorgensen of Denmark or Thailand's Boonsak Ponsana before a much anticipated meeting with Chen Long and a chance to get even.

   "I want to forget about the Korea Open and play better here. My target is to win the Malaysia Open for the 10th time which is not going to be easy," said Chong Wei after his warm-up session at Putra Stadium yesterday.

   "I have other players from China to face even before  thinking about playing Chen Long.
 "I am looking forward to being inspired by the local fans. There are so many players who want to beat me at home, so I need to be prepared.

   "After this, I will not play in many super series but concentrate on major tournaments. My priorities will be the Asian Games and Commonwealth Games. I  will also be aiming for the World Championships and helping  Malaysia in the Thomas Cup."

   Chong Wei has reached every final of the Malaysia Open since 2003 where he lost to China's Chen Hong and since then he  has won all but the 2007 event when he was beaten by Bao Chunlai, also from China, in the quarter-finals.

 Chong Wei opens against Hans Kristian Vittinghus of Denmark, whom the Malaysian beat in their last meeting in the 2012 All England, today.

Lee Chong Wei training for the Malaysia Open yesterday. Pic by Osman Adnan

Read more: Aiming for perfect 10 - Badminton - New Straits Times

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