KUALA LUMPUR: Former internationals Ng Hui Lin and Ng Hui Ern are keen to rejoin the national badminton team after completing their tertiary studies in June.
The return of this women’s doubles pair should be well received by Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) as it will strengthen Malaysia’s depth in the women’s team event for the Asian Games in Incheon in September.
Since leaving the national team to pursue degrees in Economics at the University of Loughborough in Britain in 2011, sisters Hui Lin and Hui Ern have done well to strike a balance between studies and badminton.
The duo are in the final year of their studies and have somehow done well to maintain a good world ranking.
The are now 23rd in the world – just seven spots behind Myanmar SEA Games gold medallist Woon Khe Wei-Vivian Hoo and four ahead of Amelia Anscelly-Soong Fie Cho.
In fact, independent shuttlers Hui Lin-Hui Ern will be out to keep the Malaysian flag flying high in the main draw of the All-England in Birmingham from March 4-9.
“We hope to return to BAM after our studies in June. BAM have been very supportive of us,” said Hui Ern
“We have been competing in tournaments to keep our spirits up but this is our final year and we want to strike the right balance. We do not want to go through another year (of studies).”
Besides the All-England, the duo have also signed up for the Singapore Open (from April 8-13) and the New Zealand Open (from April 15-19) during the Easter holidays.
Last year, they did reasonably well by emerging as runners-up in the Bitburger Open, Scottish Open and Irish Open.
With Malaysia struggling to find capable women’s doubles shuttlers, their presence will be a welcome boost indeed.
The Ng sisters had hoped to feature in the Uber Cup Finals in May but that looks unlikely. Malaysia are not likely to qualify although their women’s doubles have a good standing in the world rankings.
If BAM had given priority to sending their women’s singles to more international tournaments, they could have had a few players in the top 30 of the world rankings.
Currently, the best Malaysian women’s singles shuttler is world No. 56 Tee Jing Yi. Next are Sonia Cheah (No. 83) and Yang Li Lian (No. 94).
The qualification of teams for the Uber Cup Finals is based on the team’s overall world ranking points (top three women’s singles and top two women’s pairs) by end of March.