KUALA LUMPUR: A change of heart by Indonesian Taufik Hidayat has brought the smile back on the Super Series Masters Finals organising chairman Datuk Maijol Mahap.
Maijol, who is the Sabah Badminton Association (SBA) president, said Taufik’s presence would certainly lift the profile of the tournament, which was dealt a blow with the withdrawal of all the Chinese qualifiers.
The 2004 Athens Olympic Games gold medallist also announced his withdrawal last week, citing a wrist injury as the reason but he informed the Badminton World Federation (BWF) yesterday that he would be in Kota Kinabalu.
“I am so relieved and glad that Taufik will be taking part in the Masters Finals after all. He has a great following in Sabah and his presence will certainly see his fans lining up at our tickets booths tomorrow,” said Maijol yesterday.
“All preparation for the Finals has been smooth. Most of the players are expected to arrive tomorrow and we will make the draws for the groupings.”
It was also confirmed that the Dutch combination of Judith Meulendjiks-Yao Jie have accepted the invitation to compete in the Finals following the withdrawal of Japanese Miyuki Maeda-Satoko Suetsuna.