Badminton: June Wei looks to build on best result in four years

PETALING JAYA: National men’s singles pitcher Cheam June Wei wants to build on his best result in four years at the recent Vietnam Open as he prepares for two straight tournaments in Indonesia.

The independent player reached his first World Tour semi-final in Vietnam last week since winning the Dutch Open in 2018 and wants to continue his promising form at the Indonesian International Challenge (October 11-16) and the Indonesian Masters ( October 18-23).

“Reaching the semi-finals of the Vietnam Open has given me some confidence as it was my first quarter-final finish at a World Tour event since 2018,” said June Wei.

“I really want to continue this momentum in my next two tournaments in Indonesia.

“I’m not setting any specific goals for myself, I just want to stay focused and keep improving,” added June Wei, who is currently ranked 64th in the world.

He knows he still has a lot of work ahead of him after losing to China’s Sun Feixiang 11-21, 17-21 in the quarterfinals in Vietnam.

However, the 25-year-old is feeling optimistic after overcoming a tumultuous period since late last year when he left the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) in an effort to resurrect his career.

“Right after leaving BAM, I was really stressed and worried, thinking about my career and finances. I had to get my own sponsors and this was not easy. For six months, I went through a difficult time.

“But now, I feel calm and happy where I am,” said June Wei, who trains with Indonesian coach Nova Armada at Sports Affairs.

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The others who train with June Wei are Soong Joo Ven and female singles player Goh Jin Wei.

June Wei also credited Nova for her recent improvement in form.

“My coach helps me a lot, not only in training but also off the pitch. He gives me a lot of advice and I am grateful to him and Sports Affairs for supporting me,” said June Wei.

Now he’s looking to get in the best shape possible ahead of a hectic schedule next year.

“There will be many tournaments next year and I want to prepare well. My goal is to break into the top 32 next year. This will make me eligible to play in higher level World Tour competitions,” said June Wei.

The 25-year-old currently represents Petaling Badminton Club in the Purple League and propelled his team to the semi-finals on Wednesday.

June Wei defeated Enzi Shafira of the Candra Wijaya International Badminton Center 11-9, 10-11, 11-6, 6-11, 7-2 in the Group A final match.


Petaling Badminton Club defeated Candra Wijaya International Badminton Center 14-10

Men’s Singles 1: Cheam June Wei vs. Enzi Shafira 11-9, 10-11, 11-6, 6-11, 7-2.

Female Singles: Pai Yu-po lost to Ruselli Hartawan 11-9, 9-11, 11-9, 7-11, 4-6.

Men’s doubles: Goh V Shem-Low Juan Shen bt Gabriel Wijaya-Galuh Putra 11-6, 10-11, 11-2, 11-8.

Mixed doubles: Ng Eng Cheong-Lai Pei Jing vs. Hafiz Faizal-Serena Kani 7-11, 11-7, 6-11, 11-10, 9-8.

Men’s Singles 2: Brice Leverdez defeated Tommy Sugiarto 11-8, 9-11, 11-5, 6-11, 9-8.

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