PETALING JAYA: Seasoned campaigner Tan Wee Kiong is feeling optimistic although he has a tall order with partner Tan Kian Meng to clear the first round of the Singapore Open which starts today.
The pair will face reigning Vietnam SEA Games champions and three-time world junior winners Lee Rolly-Daniel Marthin of Indonesia.
Wee Kiong however has an extra reason to do well in the first meeting with their opponents.
The Singapore assignment will be his last stint with Kian Meng before he takes a break to reunite with former partner Goh V Shem for the World Championships in Japan in Aug 22-28.
“Our goal is to win as many matches as possible in Singapore,” said Wee Kiong, who teamed up with Kian Meng last October.
Except for the brilliant start when they reached the final of the Dutch Open, the duo have yet to clear the early rounds of any other tournaments since then. They however, did enough to move up to 59th spot in the world in less than a year.
“My main goal is qualify for the next Olympics with Kian Meng. I will not play with Kian Meng after this Singapore Open as I will be focusing on the world meet.
“V Shem and I have qualified based on our previous world standings (15) and I did not want to waste the opportunity.
“I still want to win my first World Championships medal. After that, I will resume my partnership with Kian Meng.”
The other men’s pairs in the Singapore Open are Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi, Lim Khim Wah-Nur Mohd Azriyn Ayub, Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin Rumsani and Man Wei Chong-Tee Kai Wun.
Those who will start from the qualifiers today are Chia Weijie-Low Hang Yee, Boon Xin Yuan-Wong Tien Ci and Chang Yee Jun-Yap Roy King.
In men’s singles, Malaysia’s Ng Tze Yong has been promoted to the main draw where he will begin his campaign against Malaysian Masters runner-up Angus Ng Ka Long of Hong Kong tomorrow.
Independent shuttlers Soong Joo Ven and Cheam June Wei will start from the qualifying match today.