SPORTS

NO SURRENDER AS KIAN MENG-PEI JING HUNT SLOT IN WORLD TOUR FINALS

24/05/2024 05:35 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, May 24 (Bernama) — Despite not qualifying for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, the national professional mixed doubles team of Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing refused to wave the 'white flag' as they remained eager to hunt for a slot in the 2024 World Tour Finals in Hangzhou, China in December. 

After being eliminated in the quarter-finals of the Malaysian Masters today, Kian Meng announced that they will participate in at least 10 tournaments, with the closest being the 2024 Singapore Open (May 28-June 2) to improve their current world ranking of 24th.

"I think now we may choose which tournament to play in but we will play in most big tournaments to try qualify for the World Tour Finals (which can) increase our ranking and that is our target," he said at Axiata Arena in Bukit Jalil today. 

Seeded eighth in this tournament and the last Malaysians to win (mixed doubles title) in the Malaysian Masters in 2017, the Kian Meng-Pei Jing pair was shown the way out by top seeds and compatriots world No. 9 Chen Tang Jie-Toh Ee Wei with a straight sets defeat of 19-21, 14-21. 

Pei Jing, who admitted that an excellent finish will definitely attract sponsorship for professional players like them, said sponsors will automatically be interested in 'sharing sustenance' if the players show impressive results.

"If you get good results, I don't think you need to look for a sponsor. They will automatically come to find you but so far our results are not at the best of times. 

"Sometimes going downhill, so our focus is to improve our performance even though we did not qualify for the Olympics. This is indeed a target for myself as a professional athlete," said Pei Jing, who conceded that clothing brand Viktor, is now their only sponsor. 

Pei Jing also conceded that the struggle to hunt for a slot to the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics will be determined by several issues such as the readiness of sponsors and the physical toll on their bodies to last the rigours of another four years to serve the country. 

The 2024 World Tour Finals will take place in Hangzhou, China on December 11 to 15.

— BERNAMA 

 

 


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