Misbun Ramdan Misbun in a file photo. The BAM are giving him a chance to compete in the Thomas Cup Finals selection trial on Friday, instead of Wednesday, as he just returned from Romania on Tuesday night.
KUALA LUMPUR: Former men’s singles national champion Misbun Ramdan Misbun did not show up for the Thomas Cup Finals selection trial at Stadium Juara in Bukit Kiara – but he still has a chance to fight for a spot.
Only three men’s singles players – back-up Goh Soon Huat and independent shuttlers Mohd Arif Abdul Latif and Tan Chun Seang – took part in Wednesday’s Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) selection trial for the Finals in New Delhi from May 18-25.
Two others – former world junior champion Zulfadli Zulkiffli and Chan Kwong Beng – skipped the trial.
National singles coach Rashid Sidek said that Ramdan had asked for a two-day grace period as he had just arrived from Romania on Tuesday night.
The 23-year-old Ramdan, the son of Misbun Sidek, did well to win his first international title this year – at the Romanian International on Sunday. It was his fifth international crown since leaving BAM to become an independent player in January last year.
“Ramdan only arrived yesterday and had appealed to BAM to give him some time as he is keen to take part in the trial. BAM have given him a chance to compete in the trial on Friday,” said Rashid.
On Wednesday, only one match was played – with Soon Huat defeating Arif 21-14, 23-21. After the defeat, Arif withdrew from the trial.
Rashid said that Soon Huat will take on Chun Seng on Thursday and Ramdan on Friday. Only one ticket is available for the Thomas Cup Finals’ singles team as the first three slots have been taken by world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei, Chong Wei Feng and Liew Daren.
In the men’s doubles, professionals Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif-Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari could not play as a pair due to an injury to Fairuzizuan.
Zakry then teamed up with back-up shuttler Tan An Khang and the duo went down 20-22, 18-21 to Chooi Kah Ming-Teo Ee Yi. The other pairs who took part were Nelson Heg Wei Keat-Low Juan Shen and Chan Peng Soon-Ow Yao Han.
National doubles coach Pang Cheh Chang said that there was only one spot up for grabs in the men’s doubles. BAM have confirmed Tan Wee Kiong-Hoon Thien How, Lim Khim Wah-Goh V Shem and Tan Boon Heong for the Finals.
“It is unfortunate that Fairuzizuan could not play because his eye was swollen after accidentally being hit during a training session with Zakry,” said Cheh Chang.
“Zakry partnered with our back-up player ... he withdrew from the trial after losing the match. We just need one more player to complete the cast and we’ll decide after the trial.”
In another men’s doubles match on Wednesday, Peng Soon-Yao Han defeated Wei Keat-Juan Shen 21-15, 20-22, 21-7.
Former international Koo Kien Keat, who was invited for the trial, could not attend because of his commitment as a club player with Granular in Thailand.
In the women’s doubles, the Ng sisters – Hui Lin and Hui Ern – also could not make it for the Uber Cup Finals selection trial because of their studies in England. They will only complete their studies in June.