Pearly-Thinaah out of Uber Cup?

KUALA LUMPUR: Top women's doubles pair Pearly Tan-M.Thinaah are most likely to be left out of next month's Uber Cup in Chengdu, China.

BA of Malaysia (BAM) coaching director Rexy Mainaky told the media on Tuesday that it is better to be realistic about the possible outcome than to have Pearly-Thinaah play in a tournament that has very little impact on their Olympic preparation.

For the Uber Cup on April 27-May 5, Malaysia are in Group B with Thailand, Taiwan, and Australia.

"We have not finalised this, but we will discuss it tomorrow (Wednesday).

"Honestly, I am being very realistic because Pearly-Thinaah could use that extra one week to focus on their training and preparation for the Olympics.

"For the singles, we don't have many options but to choose from players like Goh Jin Wei, K. Letshanaa, Wong Ling Ching, Siti Nurshuhaini Azman, and Siti Zulaikha Azmi, who showed positive progress at the recent Dutch and German Juniors.

"But if we're only going to send Pearly-Thinaah to the Uber Cup just to guarantee us one point in a tie, it's really not worth it, isn't it?

"We are weighing in the matter and will finalise this soon. There is a possibility that Pearly-Thinaah may join the trip, so they can continue training in China, or they could stay back here," explained Rexy.

On whether there could be negative backlash for leaving the world No. 13 out of a tournament so close to the Olympics in July, Rexy refuted it, saying: "Not really, because they still have the Asian Championships (April 9-14) before the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals, and after that more World Tour events such as the Malaysia Masters (May 21-26) before the Olympics.

"Like I said, it's not that the Uber Cup is not an important tournament, but we need to be realistic."

For the record, the Malaysian women's team have never made it past the quarter-finals of the Uber Cup since its inception in 1957.

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