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Doubles shuttlers Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif-Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari want a lot of noise at the Putra Stadium to help fire them up to play better in the Thomas Cup Finals.
And they have called on the Malaysian fans to cheer loudly.
“The louder the better. Fairuzizuan and I prefer it loud to keep us going. In fact, we have been letting out shouts of encouragement to each other during training,” said Zakry.
“We realise that when we are quiet, something is wrong. We are unable to bring out our best. We have to constantly psych up each other.
“And we hope to get the same support from our spectators. I admire the Indonesian fans because they stand by their players all the time. We plead to our fans to do the same.
“Of course, we also have to play our part and we will give good reasons for the home fans to back us up. We will give our best.”
With strong support from the spectators, Zakry is hoping to come good in a second appearance in the Thomas Cup Finals with Fairuzizuan.
The duo are the second ranked pair in the team behind world No. 1 Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong. The third Malaysian pair are Ong Soon Hock-Hoon Thien How.
Zakry added that he would not want to end up a disappointment after being given a second chance to feature in the Finals.
“Fairuz and I were not in the good books of the coaches ahead of the selection of the team. We were not playing well and did not have good results to show. But we were still selected for the Finals. We will be out to prove that we can be counted on.”
At the last Finals in Jakarta, Zakry-Fairuzizuan were the reserves but they were fielded for the second doubles match of the semi-final tie against China’s Guo Zhengdong-Xie Zhongbo. And they kept Malaysia alive in the tie before Mohd Hafiz Hashim lost the deciding match against Chen Jin to give China a 3-2 win.
“It was the one and only match we played in our debut in the Thomas Cup Finals but the most memorable one. We may play more matches this time and we hope to deliver in every tie,” said Zakry.
As the second ranked doubles pair, their counterparts in the other teams are Cai Yun-Fu Haifeng (China), Alven Yulianto-Hendra Gunawan (Indonesia), Jung Jae-sung-Shin Baek-cheol (South Korea) and Lars Paaske-Jonas Rasmussen (Denmark).
“This time, the second doubles will be keenly contested. Every other country have a strong second doubles pair. We will try to defy the odds again,” said Zakry.