Chong Wei offers to help Tze Yong make the cut for 2024 Paris Olympics

KUALA LUMPUR: If national singles shuttler Ng Tze Yong, who is now ranked 28th in the world, wants to know how to get into the top 16 and qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics, he need not look any further than national badminton legend Datuk Lee Chong Wei for inspiration.

After all, Chong Wei had done the almost impossible when he rose from number 182 to number one in the world to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics in just 11 months.

And Tze Yong can thank his lucky stars that the three-time Olympic silver medallist is willing to share his experience of how he achieved that astonishing feat with the 22-year-old.

“I know Tze Yong is still young, but the Olympics won’t wait for him. All shuttlers dream of playing in the Olympic Games. I hope Tze Yong uses the opportunity this year and focus fully on qualifying for the Olympics,” Chong Wei said at the ceremony to introduce his wax figure here on Friday (March 3).

The national badminton legend also advised Tze Yong to challenge himself to be among the world’s top 16, adding that the youngster had better be prepared to put in the hard yards.

“Now is Olympic time, with the qualifying period starting on May 1. If he does not make it into the top 16 in the world, he cannot go to the Olympics (in Paris). He will have to wait another four years (but) anything can happen in those four years.

“I hope he qualifies for the (Paris) Olympics. Although it will be difficult to get a medal, at least he can get a feel of the intensity of the Games,” said Chong Wei. – Bernama