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Scottish chef regards Lin Dan as the “David Beckham of China”

Lin Dan is indisputably China’s biggest sporting icon, and it looks like he’s quite the superstar in Scotland in as well.

The 33-year old in currently in Glasgow for the 2017 BWF World Championships that is happening from 21st August until 29th August.

 

The five-time world champion and six-time All-England champion received quite a welcome upon arriving at the airport yesterday.

In fact, Glasgow Live reports that Lin Dan’s arrival caused a stir among badminton fans and the Chinese expatriate community in the city.

Amongst those who were uber excited to welcome Lin Dan into the city was renowned Scottish chef Jimmy Lee, who is the head chef at the Lychee Oriental.

Jimmy Lee, also an ambassador for the Badminton World championships, said that “Lin Dan is a massive star over there (in China) – he’s like the David Beckham of China.”

“It’s great that he’s over here for the championships – he’s probably the greatest badminton player of all time and there are a lot of people looking forward to seeing him play.” Lee added.

Jimmy Lee posted a photo of himself and Lin Dan, with his arm around the Chinese star with the caption, “Great to welcome the Lin Dan to Scotland for the World Badminton Championships.”

Lin Dan will be gunning for his sixth world title this year, and he got his campaign off to a winning start when he outclassed Kieran Merrilees 21-15 21-10 on Monday.

Badminton

Malaysian female shuttlers ease past Myanmar to secure semi-final spot

WATCH: Malaysian female shuttlers ease past Myanmar in quarter-finals

Malaysia are through to the semi-finals of the women’s badminton category after they sealed a comprehensive 3-0 win over Myanmar earlier today.

Sonila Cheah kicked things off by beating Myanmar’s Thet Htar Thuzar on straight sets. Our doubles pair, Vivian Hoo/Khe Wei then continued the momentum by sealing a comfortable 21-5,21-6 win over Nwe Nwe Aung/Su Win Aye.

Goh Jin Wei then stepped things up and outclassed her opponent in straight sets as well – securing a 21-6, 21-8 win to help Malaysia book a semi-final spot

Badminton

2017 BWF World Championship: All fixtures involving Malaysian shuttlers

The 2017 BWF World Championships kicks off today!

If you are following the 2017 Kuala Lumpur SEA Games very closely, you might have noticed that some of our biggest names in badminton are absent from the tournament.

The likes of badminton king Lee Chong Wei, tag-team partners Tan Wee Kiong, and Goh V Shem, are halfway across the globe at the moment, prepping for the 2017 BWF World Championships in Glasgow.

Other notable Malaysian shuttlers like Tan Kian Meng, Lai Pei Jing, Zulfadli Zulkifli, Yogendran Krishnan, Rui Chen Yap, Sannatasah Saniru, Kah Ming Chooi, Low Juan Shen, and Anna Cheong Ching Yik will also be representing Malaysia at the world’s.

Here’s the fixture involving all the Malaysian shuttlers.

Photo: Sports Malaysia

Based on the draw, Lee Chong Wei will go up against Brice Leverdez of France, whom he is expected to beat without much trouble. After that, he will meet either Misha Zilberman of Israel or Zvonimir Đurkinjak of Croatia in the second round.

Lee Chong Wei, who has succumbed to second place in three world finals, refused to settle for anything less than first place this year.

“This year it’s very tough. In the Olympics you only have two players from a country, but in the World Championships there are four.” the 2017 All England champion said on the BWF World Championship website.

Two of his toughest rivals, China’s Lin Dan and Chen Long are also in the tournament, naturally gunning for first place and determined to put up a good fight against the Malaysian. Chong Wei lost to Lin Dan in 2011 and 2013 and to Chen Long in the 2015 edition.

“I have to focus from the first round onwards. I’ve lost in three finals. This year I feel I have nothing to lose. You just have to beat all other players if you want to win the World Championship,” he added.

Badminton

Against all odds: Lee Chong Wei ready to clinch first world title in Glasgow

The Total BWF World Championships 2017 will be happening in Glasgow from the 21st until 27th of August.

Malaysia’s badminton king and 2017 All England Champion Datuk Lee Chong Wei will be making his way to Glasgow to clinch his first ever world title.

Despite being a household name and amassing a whole lot of trophies and titles, the 34-year-old has yet to secure world title to his name. But the three-time Olympic silver medalist is determined to change that.

Lee Chong Wei have gotten an easy start against France’s Brice Leverdez in the draw, but it only gets more challenging from there.

In the third round of the world championship, Lee Chong Wei may meet China’s world No.11, Tian Houwei.

After that, he may have to weather an intense battle with Olympic gold medallist Chen Long, who defeated edged Lee Chong Wei to second place at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Photo: AP Photo/Vincent Thian

That’s not all. Lee Chong Wei’s arch-nemesis Lin Dan is also in the world championship, who is in the opposite side of the draw.

“In the World Championships, there’s no such thing as a favourable draw because you there are four Chinese players in the competition. You will somehow face them at some point.” The Star quoted Lee Chong Wei as saying.

Chong Wei could also meet Denmark’s world No. 3 Viktor Axelsen if he makes it to the semi-finals.

“I expected it to be tough from the start and I’m prepared for any obstacles. To be a world champion, you have to beat anyone before you.” the All-England champion added.

 

Despite the odds, the Total BWF World Championship regards Lee Chong Wei as one of the favourites to win gold at the tournament this year.

Lee Chong Wei had to succumb to second place at the world championship in 2011, 2013 and 2015.

Perhaps 2017 is his year?

The Total BWF World Championships 2017 will be happening at the Glasgow’s Emirates Arena from 21st until 27th August. Get your tickets here.

Badminton

Soon Huat won’t be punished for ‘breaking curfew’ – BAM

Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) has confirmed doubles player, Goh Soon Huat would not be reprimanded for breaking curfew.

Soon Huat was caught doing so during the final training camp for the SEA Games at the Renaissance Hotel last Saturday.

According to Berita Harian, BAM president Datuk Seri Norza Zakaria said the decision was taken after getting feedback from team manager, Mat Rashid Jalil.

Photo Credit: The Star

“About what was reported in the media regarding Soon Huat breaking curfew, the team manager and I were satisfied with his explanation,” said Norza.

Soon Huat also explained his side of the story by saying he was only meeting a friend at the hotel lobby.

At the same time, BAM’s refusal to punish the player supposedly also stems from the commitment he has shown in training via his focus levels, thus far.

Soon Huat will be teaming up with Shevon Lai as they lead the charge for gold in the mixed doubles category.

BadmintonNews

Bekas pemenang pingat perak Olimpik mungkin terpaksa jadi “barista” di Starbucks

Team GB Badminton Media Day

Hidup seorang ahli sukan selepas bersara kadang kala tidak seindah yang disangkakan.

Bagi peminat, mungkin mereka merasakan ahli-ahli sukan ini sudah mempunyai wang yang secukupnya untuk selesa selepas kerjaya mereka tamat. Malangnya, tidak semua begitu.

Bekas pemenang pingat perak Sukan Olimpik Athens dalam acara bergu campuran, Gail Emms telah meluahkan betapa sukarnya dia mahu menyara hidup kerana sukar mencari kerja.

Dalam laporan badmintonplanet.com itu, Gail Emms yang berpasangan bersama Nathan Robertson dalam temasya sukan terbesar dunia itu menyatakan bahawa dia terpaksa menjual sebilangan pingat yang dimenanginya di eBay dan mempunyai banyak bil yang tidak dibayar.

Gail Emms merupakan pemenang pingat perak Sukan Olimpik Athens. Photo credit: Femalecoachingnetwork.com

“Saya mempunyai banyak surat dari Bank yang memberitahu bahawa saya sudah terlepas bayaran samada untuk cukai taksiran, bil telefon atau bil kemudahan.

“Setiap kali saya membuka surat-surat itu, ianya mengingatkan saya betapa saya semakin gagal. Bahawa saya, Gail Emms, pemenang pingat perak Sukan Olimpik, seorang yang gagal.”

Bekas pemenang dua pingat emas Sukan Komanwel itu bersara selepas Sukan Olimpik 2008 di Beijing, dan sejak itu dia sukar mencari pekerjaan kerana tidak mempunyai latar belakang pendidikan yang mantap.

“Siapa mahu mengambil saya sebagai pekerja? Saya mempunyai c.v yang tertulis ‘bermain badminton secara profesional selama 10 tahun’.

“Dan saya baru masuk ke usia 40 tahun. Saya tiada kelayakan lain selain ijazah sains sukan yang saya dapat pada tahun 1998.

“Ada banyak cakap-cakap mengenai menyokong atlit selepas bersara untuk kesihatan mental, dan sekarang, saya perlukan sokongan itu.

Gandingannya bersama Nathan Robertson (kiri) pernah bergelar bergu campuran nombor satu dunia. Photo credit: badmintonplanet.com

“Saya rasa seperti hilang arah tuju, tiada tujuan, tiada pekerjaan, tiada identity dan kepada siapa perlu saya pergi? Saya hanya mahu menyara hidup keluarga saya, menjadi contoh terbaik dan rasa seperti sebahagian dari pasukan sekali lagi. Secara mental, saya tidak tahu jika saya boleh menerima lagi penolakan, cabaran, saya rasa sudah tewas. Saya tidak tahu mahu luahkan kepada siapa.

“Jadi jika anda lihat saya berkerja sebagai seorang barista di Starbucks- dan jangan ingat saya bergurau- saya minta maaf jika mengeja nama anda salah.”

Apa yang terjadi kepada Gail Emms ini perlu menjadi iktibar kepada semua atlit terutamanya yang baru mahu berkecimpung dalam bidang sukan. Mereka tidak boleh boros ketika berada di puncak kerana kita tidak akan pernah tahu bagaimana hidup selepas bersara kelak.

Badminton

“The next Chong Wei?” – Malaysia’s Jun Hao crowned as best youth shuttler in Asia

Leong_Jun_Hao.jpg_1501415513

Malaysian shuttler Leong Jun Hao emerged as the champion of the men’s singles category at the Badminton Asia Junior Championships in Indonesia, yesterday.

The 18 year-old was firing on all cylinders in the final as he edged over China’s Bai Yupeng in three tricky sets. Jun Hao won the first one in style, beating Yu Peng 21-6. But the Chinese shuttler bounced back and clinched a 22-20 win in the second set.

However, Jun Hao maintained his composure and snatched a 21-17 win in the rubber set to clinch the overall title – becoming the first Malaysian shuttler to win the Junior Asian crown in four years.

“I am delighted with the win because all the effort I put into preparing for this tournament is now paying handsome dividends. I was a bit too excited to finish the game early and that led to me losing the second set, despite leading at one point. I changed my approach for the deciding set and it worked perfectly,” he told Kosmo!

“I’m delighted with how I’ve performed in this tournament. I know the expectations will only increase from now on and I hope to be able to deal with having more pressure on my shoulders,” he added.

2013 was the last time a Malaysian shuttler won the Badminton Asia Junior Championships, via Soo Teck Zhi.