Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia’s professional badminton player Zulfadli Zulkiffli will not join his teammates at the training camp to get ready for the Badminton Asia Team Championships (BATC). Instead, he will be playing at the Thailand GPG that offers prize money of $120,000 USD in Bangkok from Feb 8 to Feb 13 which precedes BATC.
“I am aiming for at least reaching semi-final in Thailand. As soon as I am done with Thailand GPG, I will be leaving for India to join my teammates,” said Zulkiffli.
For this year’s BATC, BAM has decided to send a young squad that led by 2011 World Junior champion Zulfadli Zulkiffli, National champion Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin, Soong Joo Ven and Soo Teck Zhi to compete in the tournament.
Malaysia is facing an uphill battle at BATC after being drawn in Group A with defending Thomas Cup champion Japan, Sri Lanka and Nepal.
According to the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) acting President Tan Sri Mohamed Al Amin Abd Majib, the Malaysian team should not underestimate other group opponents.
“It’s important that we not to underestimate any opponent, whether it is Japan, Nepal or Sri Lanka,” said Tan Sri Mohamed Al Amin Abd Majib.
The BATC will serve as the ‘qualifier’ for the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals in Kunshan, China from May 15 to 22.