Justin thankful over surprise Thomas Cup inclusion, vows to give his best

A point to prove: Justin Hoh hopes to repay the faith of the BAM selectors in choosing him for Malaysia’s Thomas Cup campaign.

PETALING JAYA: Justin Hoh was only 10 years old when Malaysia came agonisingly close to capturing the Thomas Cup Finals in 2014.

Justin had watched on avidly as the team led by Datuk Lee Chong Wei defied expectations to reach the final before narrowly losing 2-3 to Japan in New Delhi, India.

In a thrilling final, Liew Daren (pic) went down fighting to Takuma Ueda in the deciding third singles match to break Malaysians’ hearts. Malaysia last won the Cup in 1992.

A decade later, Justin could find himself in Daren’s position after he was selected for the prestigious team meet from April 27-May 5 in Chengdu, China.

The 20-year-old is set to make his debut in the tournament and is out to give his all if chosen to play in the third singles.

“I’ve watched the Thomas Cup since I was small and my most memorable moment was in 2014 when Malaysia reached the final,” said Justin.

“The team narrowly missed out on the title after losing to Japan in the deciding match.

“If I do get a chance to play in the decider, I want to give my very best.”

It has not been an easy journey for Justin after suffering injury after injury over the past year.

The promising youngster’s injury problems started when he ruptured his left Achilles tendon a year ago which ruled him out of the Cambodia SEA Games.

Justin was sidelined for eight months before making his competitive return last November but only managed to play in three tournaments since after picking up right foot and knee injuries.

The knee issue ruled him out of the Asia Team Championships in Shah Alam in February.

The injuries has disrupted Justin’s progress and seen him drop from No. 48 to No. 234 in the latest world rankings.

Justin, who has battled back to full fitness, is grateful to his coaches for keeping faith in him and is hungry to repay them with a good showing in the team meet.

“I’ve never expected to be chosen for the team meet after my ranking dropped a lot,” said Justin.

“It has been very tough for me over the past year as I had to deal with many injuries.

“But my coaches still believed in me and I want to justify my selection by performing well if given the opportunity.”

The other singles players in the team are Lee Zii Jia, Ng Tze Yong, Leong Jun Hao and Cheam June Wei while in the doubles are Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik, Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzuddin Rumsani and Mohd Haikal Nazri.

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