Badminton

Published: Sunday January 12, 2014 MYT 7:04:00 PM
Updated: Monday January 13, 2014 MYT 1:26:40 PM

Clean slate for Jing Yi at home tourney

National singles player Tee Jing Yi, who'll be playing in the Malaysian Open qualifying rounds on Tuesday, hopes to put a bad year behind her and help Malaysia qualify for the Uber Cup Finals in May.

National singles player Tee Jing Yi, who'll be playing in the Malaysian Open qualifying rounds on Tuesday, hopes to put a bad year behind her and help Malaysia qualify for the Uber Cup Finals in May.

KUALA LUMPUR: National shuttler Tee Jing Yi is ready to put her career back in order after going through a rough patch last year.

For starters, she hopes to get through the qualifying tournament of the Malaysian Open at the Putra Stadium in Bukti Jalil tomorrow.

The 23-year-old Jing Yi will be joined by five others – Yang Li Lian, Lim Chiew Sien, Lim Yin Fun and former internationals Sannatasah Saniru and Lydia Cheah – in the qualifying tournament.

Malaysia will be hoping for at least one of them to make it through to the tournament proper which starts on Wednesday.

Olympian Jing Yi failed to get past the early round of any international tournament last year, with her biggest disappointment being a first-round knockout at the World Championships in Guangzhou in August.

More disappointments after that led to her quitting the national team in November before being coaxed back into the fold. She did not represent the country at the Myanmar SEA Games last month.

World No. 77 Jing Yi said: “I was very unsure of my future then. But now, I have decided to give my career another shot. I want to re-focus and raise the profile of women’s singles.”

“The first four months of this year will be important for us (the women’s singles) if we harbour hopes of qualifying for the Uber Cup Finals. We need to improve our world rankings. I will do my part.”

Jing Yi has been drawn to play Malaysian-born V. Sashina, who is playing for France, in the first round. A win will see her taking on the winner of the match between Lydia Cheah and South Korean Kim Hyo-min.

“I have not set any high targets because I am not in the best of shape. I’m looking beyond the Malaysian Open ... hopefully, my fortunes will change this year,” said Jing Yi.

China have sent a strong women’s singles team – top seed Li Xuerui, Sunday’s Korean Open champion Wang Yihan, Wang Shixian and two juniors Li Han and Sun Yu – but they will be strongly challenged by reigning world champion Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, India’s Saina Nehwal and P.V. Sindhu and Taiwan’s Tai Tzu Ying.

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