Badminton Association of Malaysia technical director Morten Frost believes that Malaysia has been handed a fair draw for 2017 edition of Sudirman Cup, starting 21 May at Gold Coast, Australia.
In the draw yesterday, fifth seeds Malaysia were drawn alongside inaugural Badminton Asia Mixed Team Championships title winners Japan and England in Group 1C. Notably, a list of 28 countries were divided into three main groups - Group 1, Group 2 and Group C. 12 teams in Group 1 were divided into four sub-groups of three teams each and these countries will battle for the title whereas Group 2 and Group C teams will battle for placings.
Defending champions China, who are also the top seeds, will be going head-to-head with Thailand and Hong Kong in Group 1A while second seeds Denmark are drawn with Indonesia and India in Group 1D. Third seeds South Korea have found themselves with Russia and Taiwan in Group 1B.
Notably, Malaysia have reached the semi-final of the tournament only once (2009) but Frost believes that they have a good chance to make the last-four stages and even go the distance this time. The 58-year-old Dane also reportedly revealed that the squad for the mixed team tournament will be chosen after the Malaysia Open Superseries next month but he is confident on getting 2016 World Junior Championships runner-up Goh Jin Wei to lead the Women's singles campaign.
"Malaysia have a chance to win the tournament. We are improving in Women's Doubles and we will see how our young Women's Singles player [Goh] will do. We have a fair chance. Our target is to reach the semi-finals. We can win the tournament, but I'm not saying we will," Frost said, as quoted by BWF's official website.
"It is a balanced draw. It's very interesting. I feel this year it is a very open draw. After the Olympics, there is always a rebuilding of teams. The Men's Doubles becomes the key for all teams. Those who win the Men's Doubles have a chance of winning the tie."
Meanwhile, Singapore are placed along with hosts Australia, United States and Austria in Group 2B. Check out the complete Group 1 draw below.
|Group 1A||Group 1B||Group 1C||Group 1D|