Tsuen Seng picked ahead of Roslin for World Championships


By RAJES PAUL

KUALA LUMPUR: The waiting game is over for shuttler Lee Tsuen Seng. He received the nod yesterday over Mohd Roslin Hashim as one of the three Malaysian men's singles players for the World Championships, which will be held in Birmingham from May 12-18. 

The other two players who received the vote of confidence from national singles chief coach Misbun Sidek were, as expected, national number one Wong Choong Hann and All-England champion Mohd Hafiz Hashim. 

Roslin, a semi-finalist at the All-England last month, is ranked two rungs higher than Tsuen Seng at number 17 in the world ranking list. But he is recovering from an elbow injury and it was Tsuen Seng's superior fitness that won him a place in the team. 

“I took into account the players' current performances and the fact that they are injury-free in the selection of the three players,” said Misbun. 

ROYAL GREETINGS: The Yang di-Pertuan Agong greets All-England champion Mohd hafiz Hashim at the National Sport Complex in Bukit Jalil Thursday. He also met badminton coach Misbun Sidek and bowler Shalin Zulkifli(left). The king spent three hours inspecting the facilities at the sports centre in conjuction with the opening of a new hostel and training venues for shooting and weightlifting.- Utusanpic

“They are the best three players in the country at the moment and I trust they have the ability to do well in the World Championships.” 

However, Misbun said that the players had been in superior form in training for the All-England than they were at the moment. 

“I will be able to give a better picture of their chances as the championships draw nearer. But certainly, the hope is for them to reach at least the quarter-finals.” 

For Tsuen Seng, a quarter-finalist at the All-England, it will be his third appearance in the World Championships. 

“I am glad that I have been selected for the World Championships. No Malaysian player has gone beyond the quarter-finals in the men's singles and we hope to make the breakthrough this time,” said Tsuen Seng, who has never gone beyond the third round. 

China Open champion Choong Hann will be out to break his early round jinx in his fourth World Championships. 

Hafiz will be making a bid to become only the third player to win the All-England and world title in the same year. The two players to have achieved this feat are Flemming Delfs of Denmark in 1977 and Yang Yang of China in 1989. 

Rashid Sidek is the only Malaysian to have made it to the quarter-finals and he did it twice – in Beijing '87 and Lausanne '95. 

Malaysia will be represented in the men's doubles by Chan Chong Ming-Chew Choon Eng and Choong Tan Fook-Lee Wan Wah. Both pairs were semi-finalists in the last championships in Seville in 2001. 

In the women's singles, Malaysia have two qualifiers but only Wong Mew Choo will make the trip to Birmingham because Lee Yin Yin has quit the sport. 

Malaysia also have two qualifiers for the women's doubles and mixed doubles but will only be represented by one pair in each event. 

Ang Li Peng-Lim Pek Siah have retired, leaving Wong Pei Tty-Chin Eei Hui in the fray for the women's doubles. 

Eei Hui will team up with Choon Eng for the mixed doubles. Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif will not get to team up with Pei Tty because he is carrying a back injury. 

The World Championships offer ranking points for players to qualify for the Athens Olympic Games next year. 

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