JAWAIRIAH Noordin will lead the youngest ever national women's tennis team to play in a Sea Games in Laos.
Jawairiah, at 19, is the oldest of the four players followed by 17-year-old T. Neesha, Adelle Boey and Choo Lyn Yee, both 15, in the team event.
The Penang-born Jawairiah, a national women's champion for the past four years, is competing in her second Sea Games after her bronze medal in the team event in Korat, two years ago.
Jawairiah, despite not competing regularly overseas, hopes she will be able to lead her young team members to a medal in Laos.
"In terms of preparations, it has not been that good. I played in less tournaments compared to last year. I trained more than competing. And because of this I fear that I will not be able to give my best in both the team and individual events," said Jaiwariah in Vientiane yesterday.
"I am not giving excuses. I will try my best to lead the team to a medal. However, it will be tough to compete against players from Indonesia and Thailand as they are ranked higher."
|At 18, Jawairiah Noordin is the most senior member of the Malaysian team.|
Meanwhile, coach S. Selvarajoo said Jaiwairiah's form has been good despite not competing regularly in WTA tournaments.
"Jawairiah has the right attitude to go far in the sport. Her skill level is just like any other player in the top 500. She just needs to try harder both in training and tournaments," he said.
As for the women's team chances in Laos, he said the team, as fourth seeds, will have an easy path to the semi-finals.
"I guess it will be tough to beat either Indonesia or Thailand. We are just thinking of a bronze medal," the coach added. NST