KUALA LUMPUR: Lim Chong King is only 19 but he is already playing with the big boys.
He has been roped in to train with the country’s top singles shuttlers Lee Zii Jia, Cheam June Wei and Soong Joo Ven.
The quartet will be handled by recently retired Lee Chong Wei’s personal coach, Hendrawan.
Chong King is the youngest of the four. Zii Jia is 21, June Wei, 22, and Joo Ven, 24.
“I feel very honoured and shocked at the same time because I’m still young and green compared to them.
“I thought I would be placed with the younger players under coach Misbun Sidek,” said Chong King.
Misbun and his assistant Indra Wijaya are handling youngsters Leong Jun Hao, Aidil Sholeh Ali Sadikin, Ng Tze Yong and Tan Jia Wei.
Chong King said he already feels the intensity training with the seniors.
“It’s very tough because most of the time I’m sparring with them and it’s hard to keep up with their speed.
“Their strategies and skills are also better.
“I’m definitely not even close to their level but I can only get better by being with them. I’m looking forward to seeing my progress.”
It has been a busy year for Chong King since he was drafted into the senior team from the Bukit Jalil Sports School in December.
And he has shown great promise with semi-final outings at the national championships in February and at the Malaysian International Series last month.
“Everything has moved so fast since joining the senior team. I’ve grown a lot as a player and I hope to keep on growing.”