Jun Hao vows to make amends in Asian mixed team meet after shock in Bangkok

Picking up the pieces: Leong Jun Hao suffered a shock defeat to independent player and world No. 92 Yeoh Seng Zoe in the first qualifying round of the Thailand Masters.

PETALING JAYA: National men’s singles shuttler Leong Jun Hao is out to make amends in the Asian Mixed Team Championships from Feb 14-19 in Dubai after a poor start to the year.

World No. 66 Jun Hao had suffered a shock defeat to independent player and world No. 92 Yeoh Seng Zoe in the first qualifying round of the just-concluded Thailand Masters in Bangkok.

While disappointed with his performance, Jun Hao is determined to prove that the defeat was only a blip as he looks to justify his selection for the team meet.

“My confidence level went down a bit after the loss but I want to put this behind me and re-focus for the Asian meet,” said Jun Hao.

“There are some things that I need to improve on and I’m working on it.

“I want to do better in the team meet if called upon.’’

The 23-year-old will be joined by independent player and world No. 4 Lee Zii Jia in the team meet.

Jun Hao can take heart as he does have a good record in team events.

Although he will be making his maiden appearance in a mixed team event, Jun Hao was part of the men’s team who emerged victorious in the 2022 Asian Team championships.

In a crucial group stage tie against Japan, Jun Hao kept his cool to overcome Koshiro Moriguchi 21-18, 21-15 and handed Malaysia a narrow 3-2 win which allowed them to finish top of Group B.

He was also part of the Thomas Cup Finals squad in Bangkok.

In total, Jun Hao has featured in seven team events, including the 2018 and 2020 Thomas Cup Finals in Bangkok and Aarhus, and the 2020 Asian Team Championships in Manila.

In the mixed team meet in Dubai, which also serves as the qualifier for the Sudirman Cup from May 14-21 in Suzhou, China, Malaysia have been drawn alongside India, Kazakhstan and hosts the United Arab Emirates in Group B.

Malaysia need to beat India to avoid other seeded teams like China, Indonesia and Japan in the quarter-finals.

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