BY RAJES PAUL
PETALING JAYA: National woman shuttler Lydia Cheah underlined her prowess in the junior tournaments by winning the 100Plus Sukan Teras National Junior Circuit Grand Finals for the second consecutive time.
Now, the 17-year-old Lydia will launch a serious challenge to start winning titles in the senior category, starting with the Kuala Lumpur Open at the KLBA Hall on Wednesday.
On Saturday, the lanky Lydia beat Stephanie Shalini in the final to emerge as the Girls' Under-18 singles title.
After completing her Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) recently, Lydia said that she could now give her full attention in winning honours in the senior events.
My aim is to win the women's singles title in the KL Open. If I win, it will be my first title in the senior ranks, said Lydia, whose previous best in the senior event this year is reaching the semi-finals of the Malacca Open.
I have completed my SPM. Now, I can give my undivided attention to badminton. Hopefully, I will be able to make great strides in the senior tournaments starting with the KL Open.
This year, despite her balancing act between studies and badminton, she made Malaysia proud by emerging as the runner-up in the Asian Junior Championships in Kuala Lumpur.
In the World Junior Championships, however, she did not clear the early rounds.
Her main challengers in the Kuala Lumpur Open will be Malaysia's top two players – Wong Mew Choo and Julia Wong.