BIRMINGHAM: Last year, top Malaysian women’s doubles pair Vivian Hoo-Woon Khe Wei made an impressive run to the quarter-finals of the All-England.
But despite winning the SEA Games gold medal last year, Vivian-Khe Wei have yet to make a successful breakthrough.
A string on unimpressive results means the pair are only ranked 16th in the world.
However, that has not dampen Khe Wei’s spirit as she seeks to emulate their quarter-final appearance.
It will certainly be tough as Vivian-Khe Wei are down to meet England’s Heather Oliver-Kata Robertshaw in the first round. If they win, they are drawn to face Japan’s Misaki Matsutomo-Ayaka Takahashi in the second round.
Matsutomo-Takahashi, the world No. 4, are riding high following their German Open success on Sunday. The Japanese were simply too strong for Vivian-Khe Wei when both pairs met in the quarter-finals in Mulheim.
Khe Wei, however, refuses to admit defeat just yet and is looking forward to turning the tables this time around.
“I thought Vivian and I played fairly well in Germany and the results weren’t too bad,” said Khe Wei.
“It was just during the quarter-finals that our Japanese opponents just blew us away as they were too strong. We definitely didn’t play well in that match.
“But I don’t think it’s impossible to beat them ... especially since we just faced them and the memory of playing them is still fresh.
“The target is definitely to make the quarter-finals once again. But with such a tough draw, we definitely need to give our best and go for an upset,” added Khe Wei.
The Ng sisters - Hui Lin-Hui Ern – are the other Malaysian pair in the fray. They will meet Matsutomo-Takahashi in the first round.
In mixed doubles, Malaysia’s sole representatives – Chan Peng Soon-Lai Pei Jing – look to be heading for an early exit as they are down to meet world champions Tontowi Ahmad-Liliyana Natsir of Indonesian in the first round.