Aaron Chia believes not being seeded at the upcoming Paris Olympics will work in his and Soh Wooi Yik's favour, as the national men’s doubles pair aim to go the distance to bring home the elusive gold medal.

Chia-Soh are ranked fifth in the Race To Paris qualifications, which meant they missed out on a seeding, as only the top four pairs are seeded.

While being seeded means being handed a rather favourable draw on paper, Chia feels not being classified as the top four pairs at the Olympics has its advantages.

“We are not seeded this time around, and I would say this is an advantage to us. This is because the seeded pairs could be under more pressure to perform. Moreover some seeded pairs will be competing at the Olympics for the first time too,” said Chia.

Chia-Soh will make up the other 12 pairs who will randomly be drawn in four groups, with the top two pairs from each group qualifying to the quarter-finals.

While the Tokyo Olympics bronze medalists are expected to qualify to the last eight, Soh acknowledges it will nonetheless pose them a challenge.

“We will be playing in a round robin format and will face the strongest pair from their respective countries. But we are playing for the country and we will go out and fight for the badge and the honour.

“We are used to playing with pressure, it’s normal. We will give it our best shot against every pair we come up against,” he said.

Chia-Soh won bronze in front of an empty arena at the Tokyo Olympics three years ago due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Due to that, Chia said it will be like playing at the Olympics for the first time in Paris.

“We played at an empty arena the last time, so it will be like playing at the Olympics for the first time.”

The top four seeded pairs at the Paris Olympics will be Liang Weng Keng-Wang Chang (China), Kang Min-hyuk-Seo Seung-jae (South Korea), Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty (India) and Kim Astrup-Anders Skaarup Rasmussen (Denmark).

The draw for the Paris Olympics will take place on July 12 at the Badminton World Federation headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.