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Ex-world champ Ratchanok eyes fourth Olympics
Published on: Friday, January 12, 2024
By: Bernama
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Ex-world champ Ratchanok eyes fourth Olympics
Ratchanok returns the shuttle to Chen.
Kuala Lumpur: Former 2013 women’s singles world champion, Ratchanok Intanon, has declared herself 90 per cent fit following a torn ligament in her left ankle, last September.

The Thai shuttler is hoping to achieve full fitness soon, especially given the significance of this year, as she sets her sights on participating in her fourth Olympic Games in Paris, slated to be held from July 26 to Aug 11.

“My foot is not at 100 per cent, so I just need to be cautious for the time being,” she told reporters at the mixed zone on the second day of the Malaysia Open 2024 here, Thursday.

Earlier, the 28-year-old player was eliminated by second seed from China, Chen Yu Fei, 15-21, 18-21 in the Super 1000 event held at Axiata Arena.

As she navigates her way to qualify for the upcoming Olympic Games, Ratchanok will tread carefully, considering the competition from three other compatriots, including Pornpawee Chochuwong, who are also vying for a spot in Paris.

According to Race to Paris ranking, Ratchanok is now the top Thai player as she is ranked in 11th place with 56,373 points while Chochuwong is in 13th place with 51,979 points.

Based on the qualification format, each country can be represented by a maximum of two singles players if they both rank in the top 16.

The qualification period for the 2024 Olympic Games that started last May will end this April.

As her age is catching up, the three-time world junior champion said Paris 2024 could potentially be her last appearance in the world’s biggest multi-sports games.

Ratchanok’s best achievement in the Olympic Games was reaching the quarter-finals twice when she made her debut in London 2012 followed by Tokyo 2020.

Reflecting on today’s performance, she expressed her satisfaction with being back on the court for the first time since last September. Ratchanok also admitted to making numerous errors, while Yu Fei appeared composed and the Chinese player then advanced to the last eight today (Friday) against Gregoria Mariska Tunjung, who beat home shuttler Goh Jin Wei 21-15, 24-22.

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