KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 28 — The victory of the national men’s doubles Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik in the 2022 World Badminton Championships today not only made their families happy but it is also considered one of the most beautiful memories for them.
But what made the families of Aaron-Wooi Yik really proud is that the win ends Malaysia’s 45-year wait for the first world title as well as a timely gift for the country on its National Day which will be celebrated next Wednesday.
Wooi Yik’s father, Soh Goon Chup said the whole family watched the important match on television in the capital, to see the two men win Malaysia’s first world title.
“Our whole family is very happy and grateful, I really want to thank my son and Aaron for being able to win this World Championship. A big moment for the family,” he told Bernama.
Goon Chup, 65, who played for the national men’s doubles from the 1970s to 1980s also shared that Wooi Yik, 24, started playing badminton at the age of six, with him being the first coach.
“Wooi Yik has always loved playing badminton since young. He would come along when I was coaching badminton in areas like Cheras and Selayang to learn and play together,” he recalled.
Goon Chup also said that he would often go to the stadium to lend moral support to his son before but it is not as often now due to the COVID-19 pandemic and age factor.
Asked about his plan to celebrate his son’s success, he said that if Wooi Yik gets permission to return home, he will enjoy a big meal with his family.
“We don’t know yet if he can come home since he will play in the Japan Open tournament next week. If he can come home after that, we will have a small celebration, maybe enjoy a big meal or if friends want to take pictures with him or take him out,” he quipped.
Meanwhile, Aaron’s father, Chia Boon Foo also cherished the moment and the joy over the historic success.
“This victory means a lot to him, his family and the whole country, especially during National Month. A history because there has never been a player from Malaysia who has won this title,” he said when contacted.
Earlier, Aaron-Wooi Yik created history as the first Malaysian pair to win a title on the world stage after defeating former three-time world champions from Indonesia, Mohammad Ahsan-Hendra Setiawan 21-19, 21-14 in the final in Tokyo, Japan.
It is also the first title for the pair ranked sixth in the world at the international level after winning the gold medal at the 2019 SEA Games in Manila, Philippines, as well as the bronze at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
This is Aaron-Wooi Yik’s fourth appearance at the world championships with their best performance reaching the quarter-finals in the 2018 edition in Nanjing, China.
Although the country’s representatives have reached the final eight times, Malaysia has never tasted success on the World Championship stage.
Datuk Lee Chong Wei was the most outstanding player when he won three silver medals in 2011, 2013 and 2015, while his silver in the 2014 edition was stripped due to a doping offence, in addition to Wong Choong Hann, director of singles coaching of the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) who also reached the final in 2003.
Malaysia has been runners-up in men’s doubles four times through Datuk Razif Sidek-Datuk Seri Jailani Sidek (1987), Cheah Soon Kit-Soo Beng Kiang (1993), Soon Kit-Yap Kim Hock (1997) and Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Hong (2010).