Yap Yee of Johor still harbours the intention of having a professional badminton career despite having turned down the chance to train and play against the elite at Bukit Jalil Sports School.
The young and talented badminton talent had found a place in Malaysia’s famed Bukit Jalil Sports School but studies come first and she has since turned down the offer to return home to Muar instead.
Yap Yee enrolled in Bukit Jalil in Form One but quit midway in Form Three before the Sijil Rendah Pelajaran examinations.
The 17-year-old, niece of Malaysia’s former international Yap Kim Hock, is now a student at Convent Muar and will be sitting for her Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examinations later this year – a stepping stone to pursue a degree in accountancy.
“My father asked me to return to Muar and continue the studies there. He wants me to pay more attention to my studies before badminton and I have no regrets,” said Yap Yee.
In Alor Star for the 100PLUS National Junior Circuit Finals which began at the Kedah Badminton Association Hall on Tuesday, Yap Yee is playing for Johor in the Girls’ Under-18 category and cleared her first hurdle in Group B with a whirlwind 21-8, 21-11 win over Malacca’s Emily Siew Ke Hui in only 16 minutes.
Her target is to reach the final at least after falling in the semi-finals in the Under-16 category. She lost to Muralitharaan Thinaah (Bjss/Sel) who eventually finished runners-up to Ng Qi Xuan (Bjss/NS).
“It will be good to reach the final as it will be a boost for my SPM exams later this year. I will take a short break after this tournament to concentrate on my studies,” said Yap Yee who comes from a family of badminton players with Kim Hock the pride of Muar.
Another of her uncle Yap Kim Heng, who is attached to the Johor Badminton Association, is her coach now while father Kim Hwee is a businessman in Muar dealing in sports goods.
“I want to be an accountant but my first priority is still to be a professional badminton player. I have not given up on my ambition to be one. There is enough motivation to achieve this and I am prepared to go the extra mile as I know it is long and winding road before reaching the pinnacle.”
Thinaah (Bjss/Sel), who is drawn in Group A, also got off to a winning start with 21-10, 21-19 win over Penang’s Kong Yi Jin in 22 minutes.”
Bukit Jalil players are expected to hog the limelight again in the 100PLUS Junior Circuit Finals.
However Mohd Iqram Muala Azman (Bjss/KL) was a non-starter in the tournament when he pulled out due to injury. He was drawn in Group D and Negri Sembilan’s Lai Jian Hwa was awarded a walkover. He will play Selangor’s Shahzan Shah Misfahul on Wednesday for a place in the quarter-finals.
Only the group champions will advance to the quarter-finals.
Tan Jia Wei (Bjss/Pg) beat Tee Yong Jie (Pg) 15-21, 25-23, 21-17
Lee Zii Jia (Bjss/Kd) beat Faiza Rozain (Tg) 21-18, 21-12
Chin Wai Kin (Bjss/Pk) beat Ng Jun Yan (NS) 21-16, 17-21, 21-15
Lai Jian Hwa (NS) walkover from Mohd Iqram Muala Azam (Bjss/KL)
Soh Wooi Yik (Bjss/KL) beat Lew Ming Hui (Joh) 21-7, 21-10
Noor Hazwani Hazair (TG) beat Lee Zhi Qing (Sel) 21-7, 21-7
M/ Thinaah (Bjss/Sel) beat Kong Yi Jin (Pg) 21-10, 21-19
Grace Lee Yi Ling (Sab) beat Chuah Xin Er (Pg) 16-21, 21-16, 21-9
Yap Yee (Joh) beat Emily Siew Ke Hui (Mal) 21=8, 21-11
Joanne Wee Shoun Zhi (Mal) beat Nur Johanna Adryana Saha (KL) 21-14, 21-14
Kourtney Kho Ker Yin (Swk) beat Lim Jee Lynn (Pg) 21-19, 21-9
Lim Ru Guat (Pg) beat Wong Kelly (Joh) 21-17, 16-21, 21-17
Too Shen Yee (KL) beat Lim Chen Yen (Pg)21-18, 21-17
Teoh Mei Xing (Sel) beat Lim Chen Yen (Pg) 21-16, 21-19
Too Shen Yee (KL) beat Lim Ru Guat (Pg) 21-19, 21-14
Leong Jun Hao (Bjss/KL) beat Tan Choong Yen (PK) 21-15, 21-9
Sim Fong Hau (Bjss/Pg) beat Toh Zu Qi (Kel) 21-13, 21-6
Rooben Raj (Bjss/Ked) beat Shamsul Anwaruddin Ariffin (Mal) 21-7, 21-15
Muhammd Shafiq Iqbal (Bjss/Sel) beat Ng Zheng (Joh) 21-5, 21-8
Chia Wei Jei (Bjss/KL) beat Low Ming Jun (KL) 21-11, 21-9
Lim Chong King (Bjss/KL) Sim Wee Ping (Joh) 21-12, 21-14
Tee Kai Wun (Bjss/Mal) beat Aidil Sholeh Ali Sadikin (Sel) 21-18, 16-21, 21-17
Kelvin Lim Song Long (Bjss/pg) beat Lim Yik Shen (Sel) 12-21, 21-18, 21-17
Ng Qi Xuan (Bjss/NS) beat Ting Ee Chin (PK) 21-8, 21-5
Ng Wan Win (Bjss/Sel) beat Ooi Shi Jie (Pg) 21-17, 21-13
Toh Ee Wei (Bjss/Mal) beat Sara Uli Saragi (KL) 21-12, 21-12
Pearly Tan Koong Le (Bjss/Ked) beat Oon Ai Xuan (KL)
Yap Ling (Bjss/Mal) beat Cindy Goh Hui Jin (Mal) 21-13, 21-6
Eoon Qi Xuan (Bjss/Pk) beat Loo Cheng Yee (Mal) 21-11, 21-8
Lim Jing Ning (Pg) beat Eng Sin Jou (Bjss/Ked) 21-15, 11-21, 21-17
Lim Mei Chen (Bjss/Pg) beat M. Selinaah (Sel) 21=16, 21-10