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Ong Ewe Hock Interview Part 2

This is the Exclusive Ong Ewe Hock Interview part 2, former World No. 2, brought to you by Badminton Information.
How many years were you on the scene?

I started playing internationally when I was 19 and I retired when I was 32. There you have it, 13 long years.

On your playing career which was the highlight of your career?

The Thomas Cup has always been my favorite event because this is a team event and I felt really proud everytime I represented my country. The whole nation is supporting you and that feeling is unbelievable. I felt tremendous pressure but on the other hand I had enormous satisfaction, especially when I won a match for my country.

I still can remember this game between me and Haryanto Arbi of Indonesia in the 98 Thomas Cup Finals. I was playing in the first singles and was under enormous pressure because the whole nation was expecting me to deliver the first point to give Malaysia an early head start.

My hands were shaking at the start of the match even though I already gained experience from previous years. Thankfully, I did not disappoint and took the first game for Malaysia. I was absolutely relieved and delighted. That would have to be the highlight of my career. Too bad Malaysia did not end up as champion that year.

Which incident would you consider as a low point of your career?

In the 98 Commonwealth Games, my chances of winning the badminton gold medal then were really good. Unfortunately, I accidentally tore my thigh muscles. It was really disappointing and I would consider that as my lowest point of my career.

How would you summarize your career?

I think overall I am quite satisfied with my badminton career even though I was never ranked first in the IBF Ranking. The highest I achieved was number two and because of this, I am not entirely pleased with this fact.

Do you still play ? What other sports other than badminton ?

Of course, but not as often and competitive as I am used to. I am retired but I still love this game. Nowadays I play golf quite often as well and at times indoor soccer.

What do you think of the new points scoring system?

I think it is good because it's fairer in the sense that lower rank players have a better chance to pressure and possibly upset higher rank players. In this system, better players cannot take things easy as every point counts. Not conceding unforced errors are keys to winning a match.

From a spectator point of view, I find it more interesting and exciting as the points are usually closely matched. However, I find the duration of games a bit short. Maybe IBF can consider a best of 5 games format.

Interview Part 3

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