Tuesday February 5, 2013
Time for duo to live up to expectations
By RAJES PAUL
KUALA LUMPUR: Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying will be hoping it’s third time lucky for them when they compete in the German Open Grand Prix Gold badminton tournament from Feb 26-March 3 in Mulheim.
The world No. 3 mixed doubles pair are the top seeds. Based on the entry list released by the Badminton World Federation (BWF), their other challenges should come from second seeds Robert Mateusiak-Nadiezda Zieba of Poland, Thailand’s A. Songphon-V. Kunchala and South Korea’s Shin Baek-cheol-Jang Ye-na and Kim Ki-jung-Jung Kyung-eun.
Without any top pairs taking part, Peng Soon-Liu Ying are expected to win. But then, the duo failed to live up to expectations twice this season – at the Korean and Malaysian Opens.
They crashed out in the second round to lowly ranked Markis Kido-Pia Zebadiah Bernadeth of Indonesia in Seoul. At the home tournament, Peng Soon-Liu Ying were the top seeds but let slip a golden chance to become the country’s first pair in 50 years to win the title when they lost to second seeds Joachim Fischer Nielsen-Christinna Pedersen of Denmark in the final.
This time though, Peng Soon is determined to get it right.
And he hopes that a short break with his family during Chinese New Year will inspire him and his partner Liu Ying to come back refreshed.
“Most of the top players are not competing in the German Open. Hopefully, we will be able to live up to our top seeding this time,” said Peng Soon after a training session yesterday.
“Although the field is weaker, we must not take any of our opponents lightly. We must play well in every match and avoid being inconsistent. It will be great if we can win our first title this year in Mulheim.”
Peng Soon-Liu Ying have been given a five-day break for the festive season.
“I will be going home to Penang for Chinese New Year. It will be good to be back with my family as it will take my mind of badminton for a while. But I will make sure that I jog everyday and keep fit,” he said.
“Liu Ying and I are in good condition and it is important to maintain it as we have a hectic season ahead of us,” added Peng Soon, who has so far won four Open titles with Liu Ying.
Peng Soon-Liu Ying need a good outing in Germany to put them in the right frame of mind as their next assignment is the All-England from March 5-10.
All the top pairs, including world No. 1 Xu Chen-Ma Jin of China and world No. 2 Ahmad Tantowi-Lilyana Natsir of Indonesia, will be competing.
Besides the two European tournaments, Peng Soon-Liu Ying are counted on to make a difference for Malaysia in the Sudirman Cup mixed team competition at the Putra Stadium from May 19-26 and the World Championships in Guangzhou in August.