KUALA LUMPUR: National women's singles shuttler Ho Yen Mei may not be a household name just yet, but that is all set to change this year.
The ambitious junior shuttler, who draws inspiration from the wives of the two best badminton players in the world, has now started full-time training after graduating from the Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS).
Last year, her badminton career took a backseat as she concentrated on her Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examinations.
Yen Mei said that she draws inspiration from former world champion Xie Xingfang and 2007 China Open winner Wong Mew Choo.
Xingfang is the wife of five-time world champion and two-time Olympic champion Lin Dan while Mew Choo is married to Malaysian hero and world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei.
“I admire Xie Xingfang because of her skills, movements, body language and fire on court. She anticipates her opponent’s movements very well and she is very calm on the court,” she said.
BUKIT JALIL: World No. 1 Lee Chong Wei sank to his knees with his head bowed down.
When he got up, tears were rolling down his cheeks. His fanatical fans stood up and gave him a deserving standing ovation.
It was an emotional moment for the 31-year-old Lee Chong Wei when he amazingly landed his 10th, and maybe final, Malaysian Open title at the Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Sunday.
He had to stave off an early assault from a ferocious Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia before subduing him for a 21-19, 21-9 win in a 47-minute men’s singles clash.
Immediately after the triumph, he revealed that he may retire at the end of the year.
BUKIT JALIL: Let's be real, it will be tough for world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei to win his 10th home title in the Maybank Malaysian Open when the action starts Wednesday with the first round at Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
He is getting older. His younger opponents are getting bolder and stronger. And he is starting to feel the burden of responsibility on his tired shoulders.
But the 31-year-old intends to let the magic of playing at home do the talking once again this week.
His nine-month-old baby boy Kingston will be cheering his “papa” on every day from the stands. His devoted wife Wong Mew Choo, family and friends will be there. And thousands of his loyal and patriotic fans will be rooting for him.