Fasting during Thomas Cup not an issue for Iskandar

By Seng Foo 8 May 2018 851
Fasting during Thomas Cup not an issue for Iskandar
Malaysian shuttler Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin refused to let fasting be an excuse at the upcoming Thomas Cup in Bangkok, Thailand.

The 30th edition of the international badminton tournament will begin on May 20, just four days after the Muslim holy month of Ramadan is expected to start.

For the 26-year-old, who was named in the Malaysian men's squad to take on Denmark, Russia and Algeria in Group D, it was important to play well and fulfil his religious obligation at the same time.

"As a Muslim, having the intention to fast is a must," he told Astro Arena.

"Usually when I have any tournament during the fasting period, I will seek advice from the National Sports Institute in terms of dietary and how to take care of my body.

"The rest will then depend on myself and the coaches on what we need to do to handle the matter at hand."

Iskandar also expressed his gratitude to Misbun Sidek for including him in the squad, especially after he lost to Kantaphon Wangcharoen in a decisive fifth game of Malaysia's group match against Thailand at the 2018 Badminton Asia Team Championships in February.

However, he admitted he could not afford to rest on his laurels as up-and-coming shuttlers Lee Zii Jia and Leong Jun Hao were called up as well for the tournament.

"We are competing against each other [for a spot on the matchday squad].

"In Bangkok, I also hope not to repeat the same mistake I did against Thailand in the qualifying stage.

"I have learned a lot from it since then," he added.

In the previous Thomas Cup in 2016, Malaysia lost to Denmark in the semi-finals.

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Seng Foo