Top male shuttler Wong studying rivals ahead of SEA Games
He has not beaten his Malaysian rival in five previous meetings across seven years.
But, the Republic's top male shuttler Derek Wong aims to reverse his winless streak against Chong Wei Feng at the OUE Singapore Open, which starts on Tuesday at the Indoor Stadium.
The two have been drawn to play in the first of the two-round qualifiers for the men's singles competition.
After training yesterday, world No. 42 Wong said: "It's true that I haven't been beating him, and I have actually spoken to my coach about him and Tanongsak (Saensomboonsuk of Thailand) because these are players I haven't beaten before, even though I have won against senior players like Taufik (Hidayat, former Olympic and world champion) in the past."
"It seems like all of them know how to play against me but I don't know how to play against them," added the 26-year-old, who lost to India's Sai Praneeth in the second round of the Super Series tournament last year.
The 2012 Olympian has been analysing videos of the Malaysian and Thai shuttlers with the upcoming South-east Asia (SEA) Games in mind.
"Just nice, I will be playing against Chong Wei Feng at the Singapore Open... but there's no certainty in sport, you can come up with a strategy but your opponent can change as well," Derek said.
"It's about how prepared you are to go into the match, and how well you can adapt to the changes on court."
Luck also plays a part in sport, and Wong may just have the rub of the green at the Singapore Open, as he works towards the 28th SEA Games here in June.
His opponent Chong - who was the world No. 13 this time last year - is still on the comeback trail after injuring his hamstring at the Indian Open Grand Prix Gold in January.
The current world No. 44 cited himself as "95 per cent okay" before the ongoing Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur, but lost 23-21, 21-9 to Denmark's Emil Holst in a first-round qualifier for the men's singles.
Still, Wong knows he cannot be complacent against the Malaysian.
He will also use the opportunity to suss out potential opponents at the SEA Games next week.
"The SEA Games will be at the Singapore Indoor Stadium as well, and a few of the opponents will be coming for the Singapore Open," said Wong, who will compete in four tournaments - including the mixed-team Sudirman Cup - between the Singapore Open and the SEA Games.
"I want to absorb as much of the atmosphere I can get, so that I know roughly what it's going to be like that when it comes to the SEA Games.
"I hope to do as well as I can (in the Singapore Open), it's a stepping stone for the upcoming SEA Games."
I will be playing against Chong Wei Feng at the Singapore Open... but there’s no certainty in sport, you can come up with a strategy but your opponent can change as well. It’s about how prepared you are to go into the match, and how well you can adapt to the changes on court.
— Derek Wong