Pair of aces


  • Badminton
  • Thursday, 25 Jun 2020

Still top pros: Goh V Shem and Tan Wee Kiong.

PETALING JAYA: Independent shuttler Goh V Shem believes he and partner Tan Wee Kiong stand a “better chance” this time of being picked for the national team to the Thomas Cup Finals in Aarhus, Denmark from Oct 3-11.

The fact that Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) have invited them to train with the national team next month showed that the national body do consider them for selection.

After leaving the national team early last year, V Shem-Wee Kiong were overlooked for the Sudirman Cup last year and Asia Team Championships in February – despite being one of the top two ranked pairs in the country.“I think we have a better chance this time as BAM have invited us to return to ABM (Academy Badminton Malaysia) for joint-training,” said V Shem.

“We have to take this chance and prove our worth.”

V Shem, who is seeking to make his sixth straight appearance in the Finals since his debut in 2012, said the Thomas Cup held a special place in his heart. It was in the 2014 New Delhi edition where it all started for him and Wee Kiong.

The scratch partnership then sparkled to inspire Malaysia to their first final in 12 years but they were pipped to the title by Japan who won 3-2.

The pair were unbeaten in the entire campaign, winning all their four matches including against Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda in the second doubles match of the final against Japan to draw level 2-2.

“I treasured the 2014 memories a lot although we came so close to bringing the Thomas Cup home (for the first time since 1992),” said V Shem.

“Many good things followed after that. Wee Kiong and I were made a permanent pair and we went on to achieve a lot together... winning the Commonwealth Games gold (in Glasgow, in 2014), Rio Olympics silver medal and becoming the world No. 1 (in 2016).

“There were times when we were going through a rough patch and I would watch video footage of the 2014 Thomas Cup to draw inspiration from there, reminding ourselves that we were once that good.

“Of course, we are no longer young and it’s going to be difficult to get to anywhere near that kind of performance but a tournament like the Thomas Cup could be just what we need to get our career alive and kicking again.

“We would really love to get a shot at playing in the Thomas Cup.

“Hopefully, we will make the team.”

V Shem-Wee Kiong will be fighting for one of the three doubles berths with Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik, Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi and Nur Izzuddin Rumsani-Goh Sze Fei.

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Goh V Shem , Tan Wee Kiong , badminton , Thomas Cup

   

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