Ee Yi game for a new role in Dubai if team strategy calls for it

PETALING JAYA: Independent men’s doubles player Teo Ee Yi is ready to play in any role, including forming a scratch pair with Aaron Chia if that is part of Malaysia’s strategy to do well in the Asian Mixed Team Championship in Dubai from Feb 14-19.

Ee Yi partnered Aaron during the 2018 Thomas Cup in Bangkok where they played in two matches – against Mathias Boe-Mathias Christensen in a 2-3 defeat against Denmark and against Fajar Alfian-Rian Ardianto in a 1-3 loss to Indonesia in the quarter-finals.

They suffered defeats in both matches but Aaron went on to forge a long-term partnership with Soh Wooi Yik and they are currently the world champions while Ee Yi and Ong Yew Sin are now the most consistent independent pair ranked as the world No. 8.

Both combinations are strong enough to hold their own against their opposition in Dubai but Ee Yi said he is ready abide by the decision of national doubles coaching director Rexy Mainaky and also their personal coach Rosman Razak.

The pair returned to Akademi Badminton Malaysia (ABM) for the Asan Mixed Team centralised training which started yesterday.

“We don’t mind partnering anyone during the Asian Mixed Team as it depends on the coach. If the coach is confident with a different combination playing against a specific country, we will just follow that decision,” said Ee Yi.

“We are excited to make a return and are happy that BAM (Badminton Association of Malaysia) appreciate our contribution and have invited us to compete in team events.

“We also decided to withdraw from the Thailand Masters after BAM had included us in the team as we wanted to focus more on our preparation for the Asian Mixed Team.’’

Meanwhile, Yew Sin was relieved that he has recovered fully from Influenza A which he contracted upon returning from competing at the India Open three weeks ago.

As for the Asian Mixed Team, Yew Sin believes that Malaysia must try to top Group B consisting India, Kazakhstan and the United Arab Emirates before the knockout stage.

“I suffered Influenza A after returning from India but I have recovered fully and can now focus on my preparation for the Asian Mixed Team,” said Yew Sin.

“India are a strong team and we hope to beat them and top our group so that we can get a better draw in the quarter-finals.”

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