RIO DE JANEIRO: Malaysian badminton is on the rebound at the Rio Olympic Games here with Lee Chong Wei expected to provide the “icing on the cake”.
Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) Technical Director Morten Frost Hansen said Chong Wei will win the gold medal in the men’s singles and that mixed doubles pair Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying were the next best hope.
He said the pair had won three matches in a row and that men’s doubles pair, Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong – also had the ability to win a gold medal if they played to their full potential.
“I am positively surprised with the men’s doubles,” he said here today after watching the mixed pair making great strides by reaching Wednesday’s final.
“All this while I have been saying Chong Wei will win the gold in the Olympics,” said the Danish badminton legend.
Peng Soon-Liu Ying will meet Indonesia’s world’s number three Tontowi Ahmad-Liliyana Natsir for the gold medal.
Frost admitted that the Indonesians were still a difficult pair and favourites for the title, but insisted that it was not impossible for Peng Soon-Liu Ying to use the winning momentum to turn the tables on their rivals.
“The Indonesian pair have been playing together at a higher level for many years but the Malaysian pair have been incredible for the last 18 months,” he said.
Chong Wei is likely to meet Taiwan’s Chou Tien Chen in the quarterfinals on Wednesday before meeting his arch nemesis, Lin Dan of China, in the semifinals on Friday.