Sudirman Cup: Malaysia in Group D with Japan, England and Egypt


PETALING JAYA: Malaysia have been handed a tricky draw for the Sudirman Cup Finals in Vantaa, Finland from Sept 26 to Oct 3.

In the draw released on Wednesday (Aug 25), the eighth-seeded Malaysia have drawn second seeds Japan, England and Egypt in Group D.

Only the top two finishers in the group will advance to the quarter-finals.

With world No. 1 Kento Momota-led Japan, who finished runners-up to China two years ago, expected to start as the overwhelming favourites, Malaysia must beat England at all costs to avoid going home early.

The 10th-seeded England will be no pushovers as they have good depth in the men's doubles and mixed doubles.

They can count on their formidable world's top-20 men's doubles pairings - Marcus Ellis-Chris Landgridge, Rio Olympics bronze medallists Sean Vendy-Ben Lane, as well as Ellis' world No. 7 partnership with Lauren Smith in the mixed doubles for points.

Malaysia, who will be led by All-England champion and Tokyo Olympics bronze medallists Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik, will be out to avenge their 0-3 quarter-final defeat to Japan in the previous edition in China.

With the lack of depth in women's events, the world mixed team event has never been Malaysia's forte.

The national team has only reached the semi-finals once so far.

Their best achievement was achieved in the 2009 edition in China when they reached the last four.

SUDIRMAN CUP DRAW

Group A: China, Thailand, Finland, India

Group B: Taiwan, South Korea, Tahiti, Germany

Group C: Indonesia, Denmark, Russia, Canada

Group D: Japan, Malaysia, England, Egypt

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