Lai Pei Jing (left) and Chan Peng Soon have two tournaments together before the Commonwealth Games begin on July 23. - Filepic
PETALING JAYA: Mixed doubles shuttler Chan Peng Soon is in a race against time to revive his partnership with Lai Pei Jing following the Badminton Association of Malaysia’s (BAM) decision to include the latter in the Commonwealth Games squad from July 23-Aug 3.
The 21-year-old Pei Jing was selected after Peng Soon’s regular partner Goh Liu Ying finally decided to undergo surgery on both her knees last month. Liu Ying will be out of action for the rest of the year.
Although the 26-year-old Peng Soon is not complaining, he admits that there is a lack of time for him and Pei Jing to deliver. Malaysia won the mixed doubles gold in the 2010 Commonwealth Games through Koo Kien Keat-Chin Eei Hui.
The Penang-born Peng Soon will only compete in two tournaments with Pei Jing – the Japan Open, which starts tomorrow, and the Australian Open (June 24-29) – before the Commonwealth Games start in Glasgow.
To date, Peng Soon-Pei Jing have competed in five tournaments – the Austrian International Challenge, German Open, All-England, Malaysian Open GP Gold and Indian Open – this year. Their best result was a run to the quarter-finals in the Indian Open.
Peng Soon believes the biggest hurdle at the moment is their lack of understanding.
“We definitely need more time to work that out. It’s quite a rush trying to start playing well with Pei Jing again because our last tournament together was in April. There is no use complaining because that’s how the situation is right now. We just have to go out and give our best in every match,” said Peng Soon.
At the Japan Open, Peng Soon-Pei Jing face experienced Anders Kristiansen-Julie Houmann of Denmark in the first round.
Besides Peng Soon-Pei Jing, the other Malaysians who will take part in Tokyo are the singles trio of world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei, Chong Wei Feng, Liew Daren, the men’s pairs of Hoon Thien How-Tan Wee Kiong, Goh V Shem-Tan Boon Heong, Lim Khim Wah-Ow Yao Han and the women’s doubles pair of Vivian Hoo-Woon Khe Wei.