HK badminton player Yip Pui-yin targets return to top 10 world ranking

Shuttler wins HK title to ease some of the pain of her disappointment at the London Olympics

PUBLISHED : Monday, 10 September, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 10 September, 2012, 1:41am

Shuttler Yip Pui-yin has put her disappointment at the London Olympics behind her and the Hong Kong No 1 is aiming to return to the world's top 10 in the next 12 months.

Yip yesterday won her first tournament since the Games when she was crowned Hong Kong champion with a 21-18, 21-19 victory over fellow national team member Cheung Ngan-yi in the women's singles final at Queen Elizabeth Stadium.

Now ranked 20th in the world, Yip will leave for the next Super Series event to be held in Japan in two weeks as a first step to improve her ranking.

"I want to get back in the world's top 10 and probably need one year to reach that target," said Yip, who was stopped in the quarter-finals at the London Games, losing to the eventual champion, mainlander Li Xuerui. "That defeat haunted me for a while. A lot of people mentioned it at post-Games interviews but I know I must get away from it and back to reality.

"The next Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro may be a bit far away to talk about at the moment, and all I want to do is to do well in the open tours so I can gather sufficient momentum before the next major Games."

Yip was at one stage leading 20-16 in her second game against Li in London, but blew it when the mainlander took six points in a row to win the game and the tie.

The 25-year-old admitted she might lose her advantage in speed and power as she gets older but at the same time her technique, tactics and mental game all have plenty of room for improvement.

"I was not in top form today and was carrying a minor back injury but was still in full control against one of the fast-improving Hong Kong team members in the final," said Yip. "I can do that because I am more experienced and could fully take advantage of the air current inside the stadium."

Yip, meanwhile, is happy her coach, Wang Chen, is back after giving birth to her first baby in June. "Wang knows my game well and can give me a lot of advice. With her just sitting on the side during competitions it gives me a psychological boost," she said.