Dark horse Jin Wei prepared for Asian Games battle

KUALA LUMPUR: Given her recent form, women's singles Goh Jin Wei could emerge as a dark horse at the upcoming Hangzhou Asian Games.

However, the two-time world junior champion may require a stroke of luck to avoid playing against top players in the early rounds.

Among the favourites in Hangzhou are world No. 1 An Se Young of South Korea, Akane Yamaguchi of Japan, Taiwan's Tai Tzu Ying and China's Chen Yu Fei.

Jin Wei has faced Se Young three times this year, suffering defeats in all encounters at the Malaysia Open, Asian Championships and the World Championships.

However, Jin Wei showed promise at the Hong Kong Open by reaching the semi-finals before losing 21-14, 21-11 to China's Zhang Yi Man on Saturday.

Jin Wei's coach, Nova Armada, said: "I am pleased with how Jin Wei performed in Hong Kong. It shows that her game is improving, despite still struggling physically.

"Yes, she does look good for the Asian Games, and we are also hoping to see the best from her.

"All I'm hoping is for her to avoid playing some of the big names early on. At least, she will have a chance.

"I know it's hard to say, but just this season alone, Jin Wei has lost to Se Young three times."

Before losing to Yi Man in the semi-finals, Jin Wei pulled off an impressive victory against sixth seed Han Yue of China in the quarter-finals, and in the first round, she defeated Denmark's Line Kjaersfeldt.

Joining Jin Wei in Hangzhou is another young women's singles player, K.Letshanaa.

The draws for the Asian Games individual events will take place on Oct 1.

Ranking points will be on par with a Super 1000 event. However, the points will not count towards qualifying for the World Tour Finals.

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