June Wei plans to plod on even without coach during tournaments


Not giving up: Professional shuttler Cheam June Wei will continue to play on in the international stage .—AZMAN GHANI/The Star

PETALING JAYA: Men's singles shuttler Cheam June Wei is not giving up on his career despite not having a coach to follow him to tournaments.

The independent player currently trains two or three times a week under former international Ong Ewe Hock but the latter is unable to travel with him and guide him in competitions due to budget constraints.

June Wei revived his career thanks to Ewe Hock after the 27-year-old lost his sponsorship with Fusionex and left Sports Affairs last year.

Despite having to compete without a coach behind him, the world No. 61 went all the way to the final before finishing runners-up to homester Lee Chia-hao in the Taiwan Masters on Sunday.

June Wei said it was challenging to compete without a coach.

"I'm happy that I could come this far in this tournament," said June Wei.

"I need to manage myself in and out of court without coaches and support staff, so I'm happy with my performance so far.

"Chia-hao clearly performed better than me, so credit to him. Of course there are still many things I need to improve like game strategies and my mindset because it's never easy to be alone on court."

"As you can see, my opponents always have coaches (usually two) with them and it always feel like I am against three brains when I'm competing.

"Moving forward, it's not going to be easy as there's no more budget left to get a coach to follow me to tournaments," added June Wei.

June Wei though is not throwing in the towel just yet and wants to continue playing.

He is still the fourth ranked men's singles player in the country only behind world No. 7 Lee Zii Jia, world No. 18 Ng Tze Yong and Leong Jun Hao (No. 28).

June Wei was part of the team along with Zii Jia and Jun Hao that won bronze in the Thomas Cup Finals in Chengdu last month.

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