Like many other badminton player’s around the world, it takes an enormous amount of commitment, motivation and organisation to balance a professional playing career with study and work.
Australia’s Claudia Lam is a prime example as she prepares for the Crown Group Australia Badminton Open 2019, while studying for her Law and Commerce degree at the University of New South Wales.
Lam previously played in this event three year’s ago in the men’s and mixed doubles with memories which remain her favourite moments to date.
“A highlight for me was playing against a top pair from Hong Kong. Although we didn’t win, we did well and kept up in the long rallies. It was rewarding to know the training had paid off”, says Claudia.
Alongside Simon Wing Hang Leung, who now partners with Gronya Somerville, Lam was referring to the match against Chun Hei Reginald Lee and Hoi Wah Chau, who were ranked as highly as world number nine in 2019.
Lam, who lives in Sydney, has seized the opportunity to enter a tournament of this caliber. Being right on her doorstep, the daunting sacrifice of time, money and travel does not apply this time round – a problem which many of the aspiring players from Oceania face on a weekly basis.
“I am focusing on my studies and strive for a balance between the two. I hope this tournament can give me the same experience as last time and I can learn from the different styles and talent”, says Claudia.
Ultimately, Lam expressed her aspirations for future Uber Cup selection rather than Olympics and Commonwealth Games which would require more commitment when studying.
This year, Lam returns to the Quaycentre on Sydney Olympic Park alongside Yuran Zhang in the women’s doubles. In the qualifying rounds, beginning on Tuesday 4 June 2019, the pair will open up against Yu Po Pai and Ti Jung Wu of Chinese Taipei to secure a place in the main draw.
Meanwhile, other pairs and players from Oceania who are competing in the qualification rounds of the Crown Group Australia Badminton Open 2019 include:
- WD – Charis Ho/Chloe Lee (AUS) vs Chia Hsin Lee/Jhih Yun Lin (TPE)
- MD – Lukas Defolky/Raymond Tam (AUS) vs Lee Yong Dae Yoo Yeong Seong (KOR)
- MD – Cham Chen/Toby Wong (AUS) vs Hiroki Okamura/Masayuki Onodera (JPN)
- XD – Michael Soon How Lim/Jennifer Tam (AUS) vs Ming Nok Yeung/Nga Ting Yeung (HKG)
- XD – Huaidong Tang/Jodee Vega (AUS) vs Niccolo Tagle/Alyssa Tagle (NZL)
- XD – Mitchell Wheller/Hsuan-Yu Wendy Chen (AUS) vs Po-Hsuan Yang/Ling Fang Hu (TPE)
Meanwhile, the reigning regional mixed doubles champions will get underway in the main draw from 4.40pm on day one.
- Simon Wing Hang Leung/Gronya Somerville (AUS) vs Jiting He/Yue Du (CHN)
Check out the full draw and schedule on Tournament Software.