PETALING JAYA: Anything less than two gold medals will be seen as a failure for the Malaysian badminton squad at the Laos SEA Games in December.
The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) have included all the country’s top shuttlers, including world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei, in a bid to prevent Indonesia from making another clean sweep of the seven gold medals at stake.
At the last Games in Korat, Malaysia were represented by the back-up shuttlers and none of them qualified for the final.
The BAM secretary, Gangga Rao, said yesterday: “We are sending a squad at full strength this time. Indonesia are expected to do the same and it is important that our shuttlers deliver what is expected from them.
“A two-gold target is reasonable as we have strong chances in the men’s team, men’s singles, men’s doubles and women’s doubles.”
Chong Wei and Mohd Hafiz Hashim are certainties for the men’s singles individual event while back-up players Kuan Beng Hong and Liew Daren will be confined to the team competition.
Malaysia will be banking on world No. 2 Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong and Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif- Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari to stop Olympic and world champions Markis Kido-Hendra Setiawan from bagging the men’s doubles title.
Thailand Open champions Chan Peng Soon-Lim Khim Wah are the third doubles pairs confirmed in the men’s squad.
As for the women’s squad, the BAM have named Wong Mew Choo, Lydia Cheah, Tee Jing Yi and Sannatasah Saniru for the singles while world No. 2 Wong Pei Tty-Chin Eei Hui, Ng Hu Lin-Goh Liu Ying and Woon Khe Wei-Chong Sook Chin will play the doubles.