NATIONAL men doubles coach Rexy Mainaky had one of the longest chats with Tan Boon Heong after his defeat in the men’s doubles quarter-finals of the World Championships on Friday. To Rexy, Boon Heong, was a letdown in his world championships debut.
Boon Heong and Koo Kien Keat held a 17-14 lead in the rubber game against Japan’s Shuichi Sakamoto-Shintaro Ikeda but no thanks to a nervous Boon Heong, the Malaysians lost 13-21, 21-17, 23-25.
It was the first time that the duo lost to a lower ranked pair since they forged their partnership in October last year.
And Rexy concluded that the duo, currently ranked second in the world, are just not good enough.
Rexy said Boon Heong was steadier en route to winning the All-England title in March but not against the Japanese on Friday.
“I am sure Tan was off-focus in the crucial last two minutes of the rubber game. He was not steady. He was thinking too much of his own game rather than just fighting for every point,” said Rexy.
“He kept on telling me that he did not have the right feeling. But we have trained at the venue for a week and it was the best preparation. He simply lost concentration.”
But Rexy is determined to lift the duo up again.
“They must know now that they are not good enough yet. Now, they must build on that desire to get back their status – as a feared pair. I will spend more time with Tan. I know he is down. I will sit down with him and try to motivate him,” he said.
On their next assignments, Rexy is hoping that the duo will get their acts right in the Opens at Japan and Taiwan next month.
“It is time for them to start from scratch again. They missed out on a medal here but we want to get back on the right track for next year’s Olympic Games in Beijing.”