MILTON Keynes-based Chris and Gabby Adcock will lead England’s top players straight into New Year action when they tackle the Victor Korea Open from tomorrow (Wednesday)
The Adcocks go into a big badminton year boosted by their rise to number five in the world on the back of their Yonex Sunrise Hong Kong Open Superseries triumph in November.
Now they head for Seoul for the opening event in the 2014-2017 BWF Superseries cycle under the circuit’s new title sponsors MetLife.
The Adcocks will be keen to maintain their world ranking to ensure a good seeding at the European Championships, Commonwealth Games and World Championships, which all take place between April and August.
But first the focus is on the Korean tournament, followed a week later by the year’s first Premier Superseries event, the Maybank Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur. When they return home the Adcocks will turn their attention to the English National Championships in Milton Keynes in early February when they aim to recapture the mixed doubles title they won in 2012.
PETALING JAYA: December was a month of high and low for world No. 13 Chong Wei Feng.
The Kedahan was down in the dumps after a shocking first round defeat at the Myanmar SEA Games, but recovered well to win his first national title in his career.
Now, he is eager to start the year on a high when he takes to the court in the first round of the Korean Open in Seoul on Wednesday.
The scrawny Wei Feng, who has improved by leaps and bounds despite the Myanmar shocker, is fired up for a good result with places for the Thomas Cup, to be held from May 18-25 in New Delhi, India, at stake.
KUALA LUMPUR: Former international Razif Sidek will not act as an assessor for the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) unless he is given an official letter of appointment.
As of Monday, Razif still had not received any official appointment letter from BAM’s president Tengku Tan Sri Mahaleel Tengku Ariff although he had requested for it several times.
Last year, Razif was brought in as an assessor in September and given several roles. He was to assess the national players and coaches, and he was even sent as team manager to the Denmark Open in Odense in October.
Though he is now World No. 1 in junior badminton rankings, 17-year-old Aditya Joshi knows it will be not be easy in the coming days. This year will be his last in junior circuit. He is hopeful of cashing in on the latest status and excel in the tournaments that he gets to play, the next immediate being the India Grand Prix Gold in Lucknow from January 21 to 26.
“It feels great to be world No. 1 in my age group. It also gives me a lot of motivation. Being World No. 1 means a lot to me, that I am the best among all other shuttlers in the world. At the same time, it puts me under pressure to perform,” Aditya told dna from Dhar in Madhya Pradesh, where he trains with his father, Atul Kumar Joshi, a badminton coach at the Sports Authority of India.
The B. Com first year student is not one to sit on his laurels. “No break for the time being,” he said.
“I’m at home training with my father and preparing for the tournaments ahead. My plan is to keep performing well this year and continue the same when I get into the seniors in 2015,” Joshi said.
KUALA LUMPUR: Fatherhood will be the motivation for national doubles shuttler Koo Kien Keat to turn around his flagging career this year.
The 28-year-old, who married Audrey Tan last year, is set to become a proud father. His wife is due in April.
And with the baby on its way, Kien Keat is looking very positive to restore his fortunes in badminton with his loyal partner Tan Boon Heong.
“I am quite excited to become a father. It means more changes and responsibility but I am looking forward to the juggling act (of striking a balance between family and badminton),” said Kien Keat after a training session on Monday.
“I hope to make my child and family proud by doing well in badminton. I have to admit that there have not been much good results for me of late and I hope to get back to the top,” he said.