Shuttlers Vivian-Khe Wei feeling the heat in Singapore
SINGAPORE: Top women’s pair Vivian Hoo-Woon Khe Wei are already feeling the pressure – and the national badminton team are not even in Singapore yet!
The badminton squad, led by former world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei, are expected to arrive Saturday.
BAM technical director Morten Frost has targeted his shuttlers to make four finals – including the women’s doubles.
With world No.7 Nitya Krishinda Maheshwari-Greysia Polii of Indonesia not competing, it has made Vivian-Khe Wei’s job a lot easier.
But Vivian-Khe Wei, despite being the defending champions and highest seeded pair at world No. 11, are wary of their chances.
That’s probably because they’ve not won a match since April – when they beat Japan’s Arisa Higashino-Chisato Hoshi in the quarter-finals of the China Masters.
“We’ve been on a poor run of form over the last few tournaments and that’s worrying,” said Vivian.
“We’re doing everything we can to get back to winning ways.
“It’s not easy because we’re the defending SEA Games champions and everyone expects us to win again.
“Even without Nitya-Greysia, Indonesia will still be our biggest challengers ... even their back-ups are pretty good.
“On current form, we’re not thinking of winning gold. It’s more important to start playing well again first.”
Vivian-Khe Wei’s main threats should come from Indonesian pairs Suci Rizky Andini-Maretha Dea Geovani and Anggia Shitta Awanda-Mahadewi Istirani Ni Ketut.
Team-mates Amelia Alicia Anscelly-Soong Fie Cho and Thailand’s Duanganong Aroonkesorn-Kunchala Voravichitchaikul and Putitta Supajirakul-Sapsiree Taerattanachai are also expected to give Vivian-Khe Wei a strong challenge.
The badminton competition starts with the team event on June 10. The individual competition will start on June 13.