After winning mixed doubles gold at badminton’s FZ Forza Dutch International event on Saturday, Hong Kong’s Reginald Lee Chun-hei believes he is on the right track to reclaim his past glory. The former world No 6 and his partner Yoyo Ng Tsz-yau stormed to the title in the Netherlands without losing a game, beating Danish pair Jesper Toft and Clara Graversen 21-9, 21-14 in the final in just 31 minutes. The 28-year-old Lee was part of one of Hong Kong’s most successful pairs with the retired Cathy Chau Hoi-wah. The duo set several benchmarks for Hong Kong mixed doubles badminton between 2012 and 2018. They were Asian champions in 2014 and bronze medallists at the 2015 BWF Super Series Finals and 2017 World Championships, representing Hong Kong at the 2016 Rio Olympics and at two Asian Games in 2014 and 2018 Lee has been off the tour for the past three years dealing with a shoulder injury, as well as a switch of partners and the pandemic. As a result, he has lost a lot of ranking points and has had to start over. “I was out for about six months with a supraspinatus lesion, then returned to training in mid-2019, then went back on tour at the end of 2019, only to be hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, which forced me to postpone my comeback,” said Lee, who is required to compete in the lower-tier international series. “It appears I’ve lost three golden years of my badminton career,” he added. Now ranked No 146 in the world, Lee and Ng started their mixed doubles journey last November in Bahrain, where they claimed a gold medal and a bronze back to back. “I am still nervous during the competitions, and I still feel the same way I did before, wanting to succeed,” added Lee, who aspires to compete at the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China. The real test for the Hong Kong duo will be the Badminton Asia Championships, a World Tour Super 1,000 event with 12,000 ranking points on offer for the winner, which will be held in Manila, the Philippines, between April 26 and May 1. “The IS [International Series] competitions we’ve just finished in Europe are like training sessions to prepare us for the big Asia Championships,” Lee said. “We have nothing to lose and it’s a good test before the internal selection for the Hangzhou Asian Games on May 11,” added Lee, who bagged one gold, one silver, and two bronze medals at the Asia Championships between 2013 and 2017 with previous partner Chau. The Hong Kong duo will face Japan’s world No 16 pairing of Yuki Kaneko and Misaki Matsutomo in the first round in Manila. With the completion of the 2022 FZ Forza Dutch International on Saturday, Hong Kong finished five legs of the European tour with five gold medals. There were two for Yoyo Ng, who recovered from Covid-19 last month, in the mixed doubles with Lee and the women’s doubles with Tsang Hiu-yan. Lianne yeung Nga-ting and Yeung Pui-lam also won women’s doubles gold at the Portugal International Championships and the Polish Open last month, while mixed doubles pairing Yeung Ming-nok and Yeung Pui-lam won the Slovak Open in early March. “While all these competitions are little events, it is a stepping stone for them to go up to bigger tournaments with more confidence,” Hong Kong head coach Tim He Yiming said.