KOO Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong may have been let off the hook but national men’s doubles head coach Tan Kim Her is looking at splitting second ranked Goh V Shem-Lim Khim Wah who have also been struggling to make an impact this year.
V Shem had stated he wanted a new partner and was linked to Boon Heong but the BA of Malaysia’s executive committee rejected the suggestion and granted Kien Keat-Boon Heong another year to prove themselves.
Kim Her said Khim Wah wants a new partner after knowing of V Shem’s stand and they will resume their previous combinations with Chan Peng Soon and Ong Jian Guo respectively. They last played as pairs in 2008.
In fact, Peng Soon-Khim Wah won the national title four years ago beating V Shem-Jian Guo but were split in 2009.
"After V Shem spoke up, it affected Khim Wah and he felt that he should try out with another partner. V Shem is young and it will be a learning experience for him but I want to make it clear that this is not a punishment for speaking their mind," said Kim Her.
"The proposed combinations are not new to them as they were regular partners during their junior days and had some success. We are trying out new combinations to get a good second pair.
"I did enter Peng Soon and V Shem for the Denmark Open but they have been withdrawn and they will be competing with their respective partners in the upcoming tournaments."
Peng Soon and Jian Guo are full-time mixed doubles players and Kim Her’s move to partner them with V Shem and Khim Wah looks to be a temporary measure.
Though Kien Keat-Boon Heong have been officially given till next year’s World Championships to prove themselves, BAM may make a decision as early as this December if their form doesn’t improve.
If they continue to dish out poor performance in the super series events — Denmark, French, China and Hong Kong Opens — as well as the World Super Series Finals in Shenzhen on Dec 11-16, the Boon Heong-V Shem and Kien Keat-Khim Wah combinations could see action sooner.