PETALING JAYA: A fit and healthy Goh Soon Huat rose to the occasion to pull off an upset and move into the third round of the India Open GP Gold in Lucknow.
The 24-year-old Soon Huat, playing in only his second tournament since collapsing with illness during the Indonesian Open GP Gold last September, was on song as he overcame fifth seed Brice Leverdez of France 21-17, 21-18 on Wednesday.
It was a massive boost for Soon Huat, who is currently ranked 106th in the world, as he showed that he is slowly getting back to his feet with an impressive win over world No. 35 Leverdez.
The Malacca shuttler, who achieved a career best by making the final of the Malaysian Open GP Gold last year, will face local ace Aditya Prakash for a place in the quarter-finals.
Target: World Championships and Olympic Games (2016-2020)
Name: Misbun Ramdan Misbun
DOB: 3/1/1991 (23 years old)
World ranking: 44
Assessment: Probably should not have left the national setup after winning the national title in 2012. Ramdan however has matured significantly and has been in good physical form too. He is also cool and calm like his father, Misbun Sidek. At 23, he should peak earliest compared to the rest.
BUKIT JALIL: Top singles back-up shuttler Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin is ready to soak in the experience of playing in his first Maybank Malaysian Open at Putra Stadium on Tuesday.
After missing out on the opportunity to play at home last year due to a freak motorcycle accident, Iskandar is ready to shine at home.
National back-up player Iskandar Zulkarnain, who missed last year's Malaysian Open due to a motorcycle accident, hopes to make an impact in this year's edition from the qualifying round on Tuesday.
He will take on his younger compatriot - Asian junior champion Soo Teck Zhi in the opening round of the qualifying tournament.
KUALA LUMPUR: Some of the back-up shuttlers are in danger of being booted out of the national badminton team.
The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) will be conducting an open selection trials at the Juara Stadium in Bukit Kiara from Jan 20-24 and all the states have been asked to send their best players to challenge the back-up shuttlers.
Talent search programme chief David Wee said the trials would be closely monitored by the national coaches.
“We are trying out this open selection trials for the first time. It is a transparent way of selecting the players for the national team and we hope that the best will get in. If a state player can beat the national back-up player, he or she will be invited to join the national team and the back-up player will be dropped,” said David.