Double blow in three days but Soon Huat stays positive


Big setback: Goh Soon Huat (right) and Shevon Lai Jemie feel the monetary loss because of tournament concellations.

PETALING JAYA: Mixed doubles shuttler Goh Soon Huat remains positive after his plans of returning to action hit the wall again with the cancellation of the Taiwan Open.

In a span of three days, Soon Huat and his partner Shevon Lai Jemie had been served with a double blow.

First, the Korean Open from Aug 31-Sept 5 was called off and now, the Taiwan Open from Sept 7-12 has been scrapped from the calendar.

The last-minute cancellations have incurred financial loss, logistical nightmare and emotional stress but Soon Huat prefers to look on the bright side.

“I thought we still had the Taiwan Open as an alternative after the Korean Open was called off. But now, we are left with nothing,” said Soon Huat.

“It’s disappointing not just because we don’t get to compete. We’re upset because we spent so much time in getting all bookings done for the two tournaments.

“These are all very tedious arrangements as it involves plenty of paper work and documentations in compliance with the Covid-19 protocols set by the organisers. So much of time wasted.

“For the Korean Open, we lost in excess of RM2,000 to non-refundable flight tickets. Fortunately, we haven’t bought our tickets to Taiwan yet, otherwise it would incur further losses.

“We have also paid our hotel bookings in advance but fortunately, they are refundable.

“By not going to Taiwan, we saved some money. The official hotel cost US$180 (RM762) for a single room per night and we’re required to arrive on Aug 31 to undergo quarantine for a week. It would have cost us RM10,000 alone for the accommodation!”

The only positives is that Soon Huat-Shevon will have more time to prepare for the Denmark Open (Oct 19-24), French Open (Oct 26-31) and Hylo Open (renamed from SaarLorLux Open) in Germany (Nov 2-7).

“Perhaps we just have to look at things positively. We still haven’t found a solution to our training woes, so at least now we still have some breathing space before the next European stops. We hope to get a training place first,” he said.

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