Zii Jia gets what he 'wanted' in Olympic campaign [WATCH]

KUALA LUMPUR: Lee Zii Jia's bold move to compete "non-stop" over the past five weeks has paid off as he is set to head to the Paris Olympics next month as one of the top eight seeds,

Thanks to his victory at the Australian Open last Sunday, the 26-year-old moved up to No. 7 in the latest world rankings today.

Although the seeds for the Paris Games will be determined based on the BWF ranking list on July 9, Zii Jia's place in the top eight is all but assured.

This development will serve as a massive boost for Zii Jia in his bid to win a historic men's singles gold for Malaysia at the Adidas Arena from July 27 to August 5.

Being one of the top eight seeds means Zii Jia will avoid meeting the world's top four men's singles at least until the quarter-finals.

As things stand, China's world No. 1 Shi Yu Qi, Denmark's defending champion and No.2 Viktor Axelsen, Indonesia's No. 3 Jonatan Christie and Denmark's No. 4 Anders Antonsen are likely to be the four highest-seeded players.

Zii Jia knows how crucial it is to be among the top eight seeds. At the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, debutant Zii Jia found himself seeded ninth, and was drawn to play eventual silver medallist Chen Long of Chin in the last 16.

This experience explains why Zii Jia was willing to go for an exhaustive five tournaments in the past five weeks.

To his credit, Zii Jia got the results he was striving for. He found the right form to enter three finals, converting two of them into victories at the Thailand Open and Australian Open. In between, he was also runner-up at the Malaysia Masters and a quarter-finalist at the Indonesia Open.

It could have been five out of five had he played in the Singapore Open. Zii Jia withdrew at the eleventh hour due to a hamstring problem.

Most Popular
Related Article
Says Stories