Quizzical over queries

Showtime: Chan Peng Soon (right) and Goh Liu Ying during the friendly match with Huawei Watch Fit badminton championship winners at the Sports Arena Sentosa in Kuala Lumpur. — SAMUEL ONG/TheStar

KUALA LUMPUR: The postponement of the World Tour’s Asia legs to January was met with mixed feelings by independent shuttlers Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying.

While they are pumped up to get back to action, the world No. 7 pair believe there are still questions left unanswered by the Badminton World Federation (BWF), particularly issues pertaining to extra travelling costs.

After skipping the Denmark Open, the pair had signed up for the two Open tournaments that were supposed to be held in Bangkok in November – but these events, together with the season-ending World Tour Finals, have now been pushed to January.

Although Bangkok is certainly closer to home, Liu Ying believes they will still need to fork out a significant amount for them to fulfil the two-week quarantine requirement.

“We feel that the BWF and organisers did not come up with a proper plan for players,” said Liu Ying.

“For the Thailand events, the only thing we know is that we need to be quarantined upon entering the country. Other than that, other details are pretty vague.

“We’re all aware that all participants will be placed in the bubble where we will stay and train there throughout the tournament. But the question is who will bear this additional cost, the hosts or BWF?

“So I think this is not the time for the season to resume yet because they (the related parties) have not sorted out all these issues.

“Once they give us all the assurance, I believe many players wouldn’t mind taking part.”

Peng Soon concurred, adding that it is imperative for them as independent players to manage their finances wisely in these unprecedented times.

“We’re not getting paid a monthly salary from BAM like we used to as national players. We’re relying on what we get from our sponsors,” he explained.

“Be it travelling to Bangkok or Denmark, it will be very costly because of the swab test and quarantine. And then the quarantine requirement back home.

“From our calculation, we need to reach at least the semi-finals to earn enough (prize money) to cover our expenses.

“It would be great if BWF could assist us on this.”

The Rio Olympics silver medallists were speaking to the media after playing friendly matches with winners of the Huawei Watch Fit Badminton Championships at the Sports Arena Sentosa yesterday.

The two-day meet, comprising three events – men’s singles, women’s singles and mixed doubles – attracted hundreds of particpants who were vying not only for a share of the RM54,000 prize money, but also the opportunity to play with Peng Soon-Liu Ying.

The winners were Kum Yi Fan (men’s singles), Loh Bo Ying (women’s singles) and Mohd Nuraidil Adha Azman and Nur Syaza Roshidi (mixed doubles).

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