S. Kisona will be aiming to excel in her first competitive return at the Asia Team Championships in Manila (February 11-16), after recently returning from a training stint with Thai stalwart Ratchanok Intanon.
Both Kisona and Soniia Cheah took part in a 10-day training stint at the Banthongyord Badminton School in Bangkok where Ratchanok was based at, and the SEA Games gold medalist was grateful for the experience.
“We had three phases of training, and the isolated location there gave us a chance to focus on training. The training was also different because the focus was more on static, which means we focused on skills from a stationary position,” Kisona told Stadium Astro.
Kisona also had the opportunity to spar with Ratchanok.
While she did not have much time to mingle with the former world champion, she still learned something from the world number five.
“We were training most of the time, so there wasn’t much time to socialise. But I got to see how she trains and it was good,” she said.
That short training stint will be crucial for the 21-year-old as she prepares for the Asia Team Championships.
The women's team are grouped together with Hong Kong and Japan, and Kisona's chances of playing looks good after her gold medal conquest in Manila two months ago.
She returns to the same city with the same intention of playing the giant killer role again.
“For me, it’s the perfect opportunity to test myself against these higher ranked players and see how far apart our levels are.
“It is a great opportunity to build from last year, and I will be out to impress if I’m given the chance,” added Kisona.
The other women’s singles in the team are Goh Jin Wei who only just returned from a long injury layoff, and also Soniia.
Malaysia face Hong Kong in the opener on February 11, before facing Japan two days later.
The Asia Team Championships also doubles up as the qualifier for the Thomas and Uber Cup finals in May.