Soniia Cheah has vowed to deliver the best performance of her career at the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
Cheah endured a rocky journey in the last two years of her career, failing to make it beyond the second round of any competition.
Despite that, ahead of her battles against Thailand’s Ratchanok Intanon and Hungary’s Laura Sarosi in Group N of the women’s singles, the world number 35 had strong convictions of her prospects.
“It’s important to stay confident and think positive as I head to the Olympics. It doesn’t matter who I’m playing, as this is the Olympics and it will be tough in every match.
“I will credit myself for qualifying for this Olympics. It’s unfortunate I couldn’t improve my Olympics rankings due to tournaments being cancelled because of the pandemic,” she said.
Cheah, currently training with men’s singles assistant coach Loh Wei Sheng in the final stretch of preparations before the contingent departs to Tokyo this week, faces a tall order to beat Ratchanok.
The Thai stalwart, who is set to appear in her third Olympics, comfortably beat the Malaysian in their four encounters, with Cheah only managing to win one of nine games in those meetings.
“Ratchanok's weapon is her attacking. I will need to keep up with her pace, if not it’s going to be difficult. I hope to bring out the best performance of my career,” added Cheah.
Sarosi could also pose a threat to the Malaysian, as the world number 74 heads to her second Olympics having had a good campaign this year.
The Hungarian, whom Cheah never played faced before, won two lower tier titles in April and May, giving her an ideal morale boost of at least finishing in the top two.
Only the group champions of the men’s and women’s singles advance to the round of 16.
The singles group action is set to take place from July 24-28.