Tee Kai Wun defied the odds

Thomas Cup discards Man-Tee show quality but need consistency, says Rexy

R. KIRUBASHINI

Stunning run: Man Wei Chong (left) and Tee Kai Wun defied the odds to reach the final in the Indonesian Open. — AP

PETALING JAYA: Men’s doubles shuttlers Man Wei Chong-Tee Kai Wun have the potential to become a world class pair but need to be more consistent.

This is national coaching director Rexy Mainaky’s assessment after seeing his charges finish as runners-up in the Indonesian Open.

World No. 20 Wei Chong-Kai Wun were not expected to go far in the tournament especially after they were pitted against South Korea’s reigning world champions Kang Min-hyuk-Seo Seung-jae in the opening round.

They did not only defy the odds to topple the Koreans but went all the way to the final before losing 21-19, 16-21, 12-21 to China’s world No. 2 Liang Weikeng-Wang Chang.

Despite missing out on the title, the pair, who reached their first ever final in a World Tour Super 1000 competition, rediscovered some of their best form after a poor start to the year.

Prior to the Indonesian tourney, Wei Chong-Kai Wun’s best showing this year came in the Swiss Open in March and Malaysian Masters last month where they made it to the quarter-finals.

In the Singapore Open last week, the duo narrowly went down in three games in the second round to Denmark’s Kim Astrup-Anders Skaarup Rasmussen.

Wei Chong-Kai Wun’s disappointing performances saw them miss out on a spot in the Paris Olympics and they were overlooked for the Thomas Cup Finals in Chengdu last month.

The pair from Melaka though did not give up and turned their disappointment into motivation to prove themselves.

Rexy was pleased with the improvement shown by Wei Chong-Kai Wun and believes that they can become a top pair if they remain consistent.

“In the Malaysian and Singapore tourneys (before the Indonesian Open), Wei Chong-Kai Wun’s performances were average but they were consistent from the first round in Indonesia,” said Rexy.

“They played well in the beginning in the final too. In the second game, they should have taken the opportunity in front of them. They needed to be braver and put more pressure on their opponents.

“Moving forward, I hope they stay consistent to become a world class pair.”

Wei Chong-Kai Wun will now take a break from tournaments and will compete next in the Japan Open in August.

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