PETALING JAYA: Independent pair Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi does not think Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin Rumsani splitting up has made life any easier for them to qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympics.
The two pairs, along with Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik, were expected to battle it out to claim the two slots in the men’s doubles but things have changed after Sze Fei and Izzuddin decided to go separate ways.
Sze Fei starts afresh with Choong Hon Jian while Izzuddin has been paired off with Haikal Nazri but both pairs are out of the running for Paris 2024.
World no. 2 Aaron-Wooi Yik are in the driver’s seat to claim a spot while Yew Sin-Ee Yi, ranked No. 8, can secure their place if they maintain their position in the top eight when the Olympic qualifying period ends on April 28 next year.
However, Yew Sin said it is going to be a difficult race as the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) have another quality pair in world No. 25 Man Wei Chong-Tee Kai Wun, who are also in the running.
“Just because Sze Fei-Izzuddin are not playing as a pair, our job is not going to be easy. We still have to make sure we remain in the top eight and we can’t forget about Wei Chong-Kai Wun,” said Yew Sin.
“Wei Chong-Kai Wun are a good pair and they should move up in the world rankings and have achance.
“It is not just the Malaysian pairs but there are so many strong pairs who are doing well on the world tour.
“We need to be consistent and must do well against the rival pairs in order to stand a chance. It is going to be a difficult race.”
Yew Sin-Ee Yi, currently training with the national team for the Asian Mixed Team Championship in Dubai, are hopeful of making their Olympics debut in Paris.
The emerging young pairs on the international scene is definitely a bigger concern for Yew Sin-Ee Yi as China have three pairs – Liu Yuchen-Ou Xuanyi (no. 5), Liang Weikeng-Wang Chang (no. 9) and He Jiting-Zhao Haodong (no. 21) – while Indonesia have six pairs led by world no. 1 Fajar Alfian-Rian Ardianto who are fighting for the maximum two slots allowed per country.
Other top pairs like world no. 4 Takuro Hoki-Yugo Kobayashi, India’s Satwiksairaj Rankyreddy-Chirag Shetty (no. 6), Kim Astrup-Anders Skaarup Rasmussen of Denmark (no. 7) and several Taiwan pairs led by Olympic champions Lee Yang-Wang Chi-lin are also pressing for Paris 2024 slots.
The Asian Mixed Team Championships in Dubai next month will give Yew Sin-Ee Yi a chance to test themselves against some of their rivals if they are fielded by Malaysia.