She is just 15 years of age but she is already becoming a household name in the badminton world. She is none other than Malaysia’s very own Goh Jin Wei. Born on 30th January 2000 in Bukit Mertajam Penang. She started playing badminton at the age of 7 and begin training with the famous coach, Teh Beng Huat who was also the coach for national number one, Lee Chong Wei, former top national doubles player, Chin Ee Hui and womens’ singles player, Tee Jing Yee.
When she was only 11, she won the Under-12 Grand Prix Finals (GP) and the Malaysian School Sports Council (MSSM) representing her primary school, SJKC Jit Sin ‘B’. This year, she created history to become the youngest national champion at the Kuala Lumpur Open in March. She was also the German Junior champion in her Europe tournament debut this year.
That was just the beginning of her career. In June, she won the bronze medal at the 2015 SEA Games defeating higher ranked players and in July, she continued her fine run to secure another bronze medal in the SCG Badminton Asia Junior Championships. Her biggest breakthrough came last week when she clinched her first international title in the senior level at the Yonex Belgian International. When asked on her many victories this year, the petite size Jin Wei could only say one word, ‘discipline’.
“I must always have the discipline because it is one of the most important factors in an athlete’s life. Besides that, I want to be a role model for the juniors who aspire to become a national shuttler,” said the Penang born lass.
She attributes her success to her family especially her parents. “My parents moved from Penang all the way to Kuala Lumpur just to support and be with me. Not many parents would make such sacrifices, but my parents did it and that is my main motivation to continue working hard. If they are able to do so much for me, I definitely want make them proud too,” said Jin Wei.
At this age, she is considered to be a busy girl. She attends school in the morning, while in the afternoon, she spends long hours on the badminton court. Not enough, during the weekends, she attends tuition and also does extra training. Her free time is usually spent either in the gym or shopping.
"I enjoy shopping and every time, I visit a new country, I usually buy a T-shirt as a remembrance,” said the grinning Jin Wei.
The SEA Games bronze medalist currently trains under Wong Tat Meng and Rony Augustinus where she surely has improved a lot. Her idols are Akane Yamaguchi of Japan and Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand. This is due to the similarities the two top ten players share with her. Akane is petite and tough while Ratchanok begin winning tournaments at a very young age, the most talked about was her winning the World Junior Championships for three straight years and then eventually claiming the world championships title at the of 18.
Currently ranked 183 in the world, Jin Wei has an ambition to represent Malaysia in the 2020 Olympics, therefore she is working very hard to improve her world rankings to compete in bigger tournaments and by 18, the 15 year-old hopes to compete in the World Championships. Her next mission will be the World Junior Championships in Lima, Peru next month. If this talented player continues making progress, her dreams will surely become a reality.