PETALING JAYA: Young father Aaron Chia has an extra motivation to get off to a good start in the men’s doubles competition at the Musashino Forest Sports Plaza today.
The 24-year-old wants to make his two daughters – six-year-old Albee Chong Rui and Alyssa Chia Shin proud of him as he bids to go far in his first Olympics with partner Soh Wooi Yik.
“I just want to make them proud of me. I’ve not met them for a while because of the quarantine training but I’ve been in contact with them daily,” said Aaron, whose life partner is Goh Mui Kee.
“The elder is more aware of my duty as a national player and sometimes, she watches me on television. The support from home will surely be the motivation for me to achieve good results in the Olympic Games,” he said.
World No. 9 Aaron-Wooi Yik’s quest for Olympics glory begins today when they take on eighth ranked South Korea’s Seo Seung-jae-Choi Sol-gyu in the opening Group D match.
It will be followed with their match against second seeds and Indonesia’s world No. 2 Mohammad Ahsan-Hendra Setiawan and Canada’s Jason Ho-Shue-Nyl Yakura.
Only the top two pairs will advance to the top eight knockout round.
With the training completed in Tokyo without any interruptions, Aaron is looking optimistic.
“Everything has been good for us here so far. We’ve had good training sessions at the venue. Now, just to give our opponents a good fight,” he said.
They have an advantage against Sol-gyu-Seung-jae after beating them in the last two of their four meetings, with the last win in the group stage of the World Tour Finals in Bangkok in January but Aaron knows the Olympics is a different ball game.
National head coach Flandi Limpele just hopes the Malaysians will not commit easy mistakes.
“At this level, one should not give away points easily, so I hope our players will play well as they have an equal chance as anyone out there,” said Flandi.
“The Koreans’ strength are in their power play and endurance but our boys have prepared well too,” he added.