Badminton Life

Malaysia Wants Doubles Success in World Juniors

Malaysia's Vivian Hoo is hoping to end her junior career in a blaze of glory when she competes in the World Junior Championships, which starts in Pune, India this week.

Hoo recently made the switch from singles to doubles, which she feels gives her a better chance of going for glory in both the team and individual events.

The 18-year-old and mixed doubles partner Mak Hee Chun have already won the Dutch Open junior championship in March this year and were runners-up in the German Open.

They will start out as one of the favoured pairs when the tournament begins. Hoo will also be going for honours in the women's doubles, where she will partner Sannatasah Saniru.

"I made my debut in the World Juniors in 2006 as a singles player but I did not go far. The competition is greater in the singles," Hoo was quoted as saying in The Star newspaper.

"It has been a different experience for me this year after switching to play in the doubles. But I have grown to like it. Now, I think, I have a fair chance of doing well in my last appearance in the World Juniors."

There is a lot of pressure on the Hoo and Mak to do well in the mixed doubles because Malaysia are the defending champions in the event.

Two years ago, Lim Khim Wah and Ng Hui Lin emerged as the world's best junior mixed doubles pair when they won the title in Auckland, New Zealand.

"I hope that Hee Chun and I can defend the title for Malaysia. China and South Korea also have formidable pairs but I think our standard are about the same with them," said Hoo.

"We have combined well and winning a title in our first tournament together has given us a lot of confidence. We just have to play our normal game."

The Malaysians will also be looking for success in the men's singles, with Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin, Kuan Kam Chung, Mohd Syawal Ismail and Goh Soon Huat.

Many of these players will be taking part in the juniors for the last time with the Badminton Association of Malaysia looking to groom the next generation of seniors to take over when the current batch retire.

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