Singapore badminton player Loh Kean Yew can add another accolade to his name.
Currently ranked World No. 3, he has became the first Singaporean to be nominated for the Badminton World Federation (BWF) Player of the Year awards.
This is also the first time that the 2021 world champion has been shortlisted.
Loh is joined by reigning world champion and World No. 1, Viktor Axelsen, as well as Malaysian Lee Zii Jia, who is currently ranked World No. 2, on the list of nominees.
BWF announced its nominees on Nov. 28 and shared that they were selected based on performances in the 2021/2022 season from Nov. 1, 2021, to Oct. 31, 2022.
Besides the Male and Female Player of the Year awards, BWF also has other categories such as:
- Pair of the Year
- Most Improved Player of the Year
- Most Promising Player of the Year
The Para Badminton World Championships 2022, which only concluded on Nov. 6, 2022, was also given special allowance to be included in the list of eligible tournaments, BWF added.
Voting for himself
In a tweet, Loh joked that he was "still voting for myself here no matter what the outcome".
Still voting for myself here no matter what the outcome 🤪🤪— Loh Kean Yew (@reallohkeanyew) November 28, 2022
Axelsen replied to Loh's tweet with a simple "Sorry bro" and a screen recording of Axelsen voting for himself.
Sorry bro 😂😂😂😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/mZ2lR2Grnz— Viktor Axelsen (@ViktorAxelsen) November 28, 2022
The award ceremony will be held on Monday, Dec. 5, in conjunction with the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals 2022 gala dinner.
First Singaporean to qualify for the World Tour Finals
Loh qualified for this year's World Tour Finals for the first time, making him the first Singaporean man to compete in the season-closing tournament, according to CNA.
The tournament features the current top eight players in the singles and doubles categories.
Axelsen is the reigning champion and has seven BWF World Tour Titles under his belt.
Additionally, at the annual Singapore Sports Awards ceremony in November 2022, Loh was named Sportsman of the Year for the first time.
He is the second badminton player named Sportsman of the Year, after Ronald Susilo in 2005.