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    Default Bin Shen-Soon Hock bid to be top Malaysian pair in world meet

    KUALA LUMPUR: Youngsters Tan Bin Shen-Ong Soon Hock are eyeing a place in the next year’s Thomas Cup Finals.

    And to strengthen their claim, the duo are aiming to be the top performers among the four Malaysian pairs competing in the World Championships, which will be held in Anaheim, California, from Aug 15-21.

    Besides Bin Shen-Soon Hock, the other three pairs for the world meet are world No. 8 Chan Chong Ming-Koo Kien Keat, Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari-Lin Woon Fui and veterans Choong Tan Fook-Chew Choon Eng.

    Bin Shen-Soon Hock are listed at No. 14th in the world and are the third ranked pairing in the country after two years of partnership. Fairuzizuan-Woon Fui are two rungs ahead of Bin Shen-Soon Hock in the world standings.

    The 21-year-old Bin Shen acknowledged that expectations would not be high on them for the world meet.

    “This is only our first world meet and expectations are not so great on us.

    “But for us, it is important to go there and upset at least one big pair. That will be satisfactory,” he said after a training session at the Stadium Juara in Bukit Kiara here yesterday.

    “Our main goal is to be selected for next year’s Thomas Cup Finals. There are several doubles pairs of the same standard at the moment and we certainly have to do well to stay ahead of them.”

    The Thomas Cup Finals will be held in Japan next year. Malaysia will either name four or five doubles players.

    The duo have been playing well of late. In the friendly match against Denmark, they upset world No. 1 Jens Eriksen-Martin Lundgaard Hansen.

    A week after that, they defeated Chong Ming-Kien Keat to win their first title at the Pahang Open. At the Malaysian Open last month, the pair went down fighting to China’s Sang Yang-Xie Zhengbo.

    Bin Shen said that the training sessions under men’s doubles high performance coach Rexy Mainaky was getting better.

    “Initially, we could not understand what he was trying to tell us – on improving our strokes.

    “But after several days, we understand what he wants from us and we are able to play the shots that are required,” he said.

    “For now, Rexy says that our good point is our combination. We hope to polish our strokes further and give our opponents at the world meet a run for their money.”

    For the record, at the previous world meet in Birmingham, Malaysia’s top men’s doubles performers were Chong Ming-Choon Eng, who went down to China’s Sang Yang-Zhengbo in the quarter-finals.

    NO MEAN FEAT: Tan Bin Shen (left) and Ong Soon Hock are bidding to create some upsets in the World Championships in the United States this month.
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