Seasoned senior shuttlers are hoping to make a smashing impact in their respective categories at the Asia Pacific Masters Games (APMG) in Penang from Sept 7 to 15.
The APMG meet is a regional multi-sport event that has attracted more than 5,300 participants in 21 different sports from 43 countries.
Badminton itself has attracted 539 participants, the second largest number after athletics and all matches are being played using the 21 points best-of-three sets format.
The 10-team badminton squad comprises Chan Wan Seong, Ong Then Lin, Eric Chang, Foo Lai Loon, Datuk Irwan Shah Abdullah (fondly known as DJ Dave), Ong Sin Oong, Ching Kon Kong, Peter Leong Kim Swee, Datuk Venugopal Menon and Dr Goh Kim Chuan.
Wan Seong and Then Lin will contest in the Men’s Singles and Men’s Doubles events under the 60-64 age category.
As a pair, both are accomplished doubles players and they are also the reigning Men’s Doubles 60-64 years gold medallists in the quadrennial World Masters Games 2017 held in Auckland, New Zealand.
“It would be a memorable achievement if Then Lin and I could finish on the podium in both the Singles and Doubles individual event, and we hope that our consistent medal-winning performances in major international tournaments can be repeated here.
“The seedings and draw will play an important part in the knock-out individual events as many senior international players are competing in the badminton competition. We have also formed a team called ‘Smash Masters’ to play in the Mixed Team 60-64-years age-group before the start of the individual events,” Wan Seong said.
Each team is restricted to four men and four women players and each match comprises three Men’s Doubles, Women’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles respectively.
“Based on the track record of our group of players in international seniors tournaments, I think we stand a strong chance of winning medals in the respective events. All of us are raring to go and pit our skills against our opponents in this global event,” he added.
Meanwhile, Eric, who was the World Masters Games 2017 Men’s Singles 55-59 age group gold medallist, will play in the same category in the APMG while Foo will partner DJ Dave in the Men’s Doubles 70-74-years age group.
“I am looking forward to this event and hope to achieve better results now that I’m eligible to play in the Men’s Singles 70-75 age category.
“In the 2017 World Morning Cup, I was the oldest player in the Men’s Singles 65-69 age category but I still managed to win the bronze medal despite the age-disadvantage,” DJ Dave said.
Kon Kong, who won the Men’s Doubles 70-74 years age group gold and bronze medal in the 2017 and 2015 BWF World Seniors Championships respectively, with Loo Ah Hooi, will now partner Kim Swee in the Men’s Doubles 70-74 age category and Men’s Doubles 65-69 age category.
Meanwhile, Venugopal and Kim Chuan are hoping to continue their winning ways in the Men’s Doubles 70-74 years age category.
They are two-time winners of the World Morning Cup in 2018 and 2017.