After representing the country in the last four World Championships, national man doubles shuttler Lee Wan Wah has found himself in a difficult and unfamiliar role as a mere sparring partner.

The new role however, has not dampened his spirits in supporting his teammates who are gearing up for the world meet in Anaheim, California, from Aug 15-21.

“Yes, I did feel left out initially. There were programmes for the world meet-bound players and I was missing all of it,” said the 30-year-old.

“They were the sparring partners for me in the last four world meet outings. Now, it is my turn to do my part,” he said.

Wan Wah aggravated a knee injury during the Selangor Open last October and with the enforced absence from the international scene, he and partner Choong Tan Fook dropped from the number one spot in the world rankings to No 31.

Only the top 16 are assured of their places.

Three pairs – Chan Chong Ming-Koo Kien Keat, Tan Bin Shen-Ong Soon Hock and Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari-Lin Woon Fui – qualified by merit while scratch combinations of Tan Fook-Chew Choong Eng received an invitation from the International Badminton Federation (IBF).

Wan Wah is now looking forward to bringing his game to greater heights with Tan Fook after the world meet.

“It is disappointing not to be in the world meet squad. But I have to look beyond that now,” added Wan Wah, who will compete in the US$250,000 China Masters from Aug 29-Sept 4 in Beijing.

His main goal is to represent Malaysia in the next year's four major tournaments – the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Thomas Cup Finals in Tokyo, World Championships in Madrid and Asian Games in Doha.