Top-three finish still a target


Chan (back row, centre) with his sparring partners during a training session at the Selangor Badminton Association badminton hall prior to the 2021 BWF World Senior Badminton Championships in Spain. — Photos: AZMAN GHANI/The Star

THE gold medal for the World Senior Badminton Championships 2021 has eluded Chan Wan Seong once again after he failed to advance to the third round of the tournament.

The 67-year-old veteran shuttler suffered an early knockout in the second round of Men’s Singles (MS) 65 category of the tournament against 3rd-4th seed and reigning European Seniors champion Tariq Farook.

Chan lost 15-21, 22-20 to the player originally from Pakistan who now represents Austria after moving to the country.

“I am disappointed with myself for not being able to win the second set to force a rubber.

“Leading 17-14 in the second set, I made three consecutive mistakes and he caught up.

“He then led 20-17 but I fought back to force a tie at 20-20, but he won 22-20,” Chan said, adding that the outing this year had dashed his hopes to add another medal to his two bronze medals won in the 2015 and 2017 editions of the MS60 age category.

Chan is one of six shuttlers in the squad from Malaysia who participated in the 2021 BWF World Senior Badminton Championships in Huelva, Spain, from Nov 2 to Dec 4.

Chan says he will continue to vie for medals in future BWF World Senior Championships and tournaments for seniors.Chan says he will continue to vie for medals in future BWF World Senior Championships and tournaments for seniors.

Sabahan pair Bruni Garip and Anthony Linggian fought hard to deliver Malaysia’s sole medal after going down 21-19, 9-21, 11-21 to English pair Peter Emptage and Rob Ridder in the semi-finals of the Men’s Doubles (MD) 65 age category.

Other players who represented Malaysia at the tournament were Tiong Ung Chiong, Johnny Yong and Chin Kon Leong.

In the MS65 category, Bruni was eliminated in the quarter-final match against Dane Jesper Helledie at 14-21, 21-14, 9-21, who is a former world doubles champion with Steen Fladberg in the early 1980s.

The Malaysian team participated in the MS55, MS65, MD60, MD65 and MD70 age categories but lost in the early rounds.

Chan also paired with Indonesian Arnold Dendeng in the MD60 age doubles category but they were defeated by an Indian pair 15-21, 18-21.

“We could have beaten them but due to Arnold’s serious cataract problem in his left eye, he missed some of the parallel drive shots which went past him.

“It is very frustrating but cannot be helped when his vision is impaired,” he said.

Chan vowed to come back stronger next year by participating in more tournaments and improving his skills.

“The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted our routine, but I will not give up hope.

Irwan Shah hopes to participate in the All England veteran championship next year. — FilepicIrwan Shah hopes to participate in the All England veteran championship next year. — Filepic

“I will continue to vie for medals in future BWF World Senior Championships and other tournaments for seniors,” he said.

Malaysia Masters Badminton Association (MMBA) president Datuk Irwan Shah Abdullah congratulated the team for bringing home a bronze medal.

“It is definitely a good effort from the team, especially Bruni and Anthony, given the limited training they had prior to the tournament due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Although there were some setbacks for other members in the team, I hope they can continue to improve in future tournaments,” he said.

Irwan Shah, also known as DJ Dave, was supposed to participate in the tournament but opted to stay away due to the pandemic.

“I wanted to go but was advised against it due to the health risks involved.

“Participants were required to do the Covid-19 PCR test daily and I felt this would be too taxing for me.

“Perhaps I can participate in the All England veteran championship next year if the pandemic situation subsides,” he said.

Irwan Shah urged veteran shuttlers to enrol as MMBA members via the association’s website at www.mmba.com.my

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