Mixed doubles specialist Goh Liu Ying was honoured and surprised at the same time to be chosen as the country’s flag bearer for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
She was chosen alongside national archer Khairul Anuar Mohamad to carry the Jalur Gemilang at this year's Olympic Games, scheduled to take place in July.
“This is definitely a proud moment for me. No words can describe how I’m feeling at this moment. But at this point the Olympic qualifying [for badminton] hasn’t closed yet, so I was really surprised they announced the flag bearer,” she told Stadium Astro.
Barring any major upsets, Goh and partner Chan Peng Soon should make the cut to Tokyo with decent performances at the upcoming Malaysia Open (May 25-30) and Singapore Open (June 1-6).
Goh, a silver medalist with Chan in Rio, is hoping to cement their seventh position on the Race To Tokyo rankings at the Malaysia Open.
The flag bearing honour will see her become Malaysia's first female national shuttler to do so.
In 2016, Lee Chong Wei was the country's sole flag bearer, while Razif Sidek became the first national shuttler to carry the flag at the 1992 Games.
Meanwhile, the national contingent all received their second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine on Tuesday, paving the way for them to compete in international events.
“I felt fine after the first dose, apart from a slight hand pain. I don’t think there will be any side effects from the second dose. We know that vaccines are not 100 percent, but at least it gives us confidence to head to Tokyo,” said world number eight Lee Zii Jia.