Loh Kean Yew will be hoping to clinch his maiden badminton title at a multi-sport event when the contest for the individual medals get underway at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games on Wednesday (3 August).
The Singaporean is the first reigning men's singles world champion to contest a Commonwealth Games badminton event and the 25-year-old will be hoping to live up to his billing as the tournament top seed. As part of the mixed-gender team event, Loh won bronze on Tuesday, but now turns his attention to singles action.
Loh competed in the 2018 edition of the Games where he made it as far as the quarter-final, before going down to eventual winner, Malaysia's Lee Chong Wei. With the Malaysian's retirement, we are due to see the crowning of a new champion in Birmingham and Loh would very much relish the opportunity to shine on the global stage. A multi-sport event title is still one that has eluded the Singaporean, who was one match shy in the last two editions of the bi-annual South East Asian Games, claiming silver on both occasions.
Since his world championship triumph in Huelva, Spain last December, Loh has yet to win a tournament, coming as close as making the finals of the India Open in January but was defeated by home talent, Lakshya Sen.
With just three weeks to go to the next edition of the World Championships, a strong result at the Commonwealth Games in England could be just the confidence boost he needs before he commences his title defence in Tokyo at the end of the this month.
On course to clash with the best in Birmingham
As top seed for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, Loh will enjoy a bye in the opening round and will open his campaign with a second-round match against Robert Summers from South Africa.
His first real challenge of the tournament could come in the form of Malaysia's Ng Tze Yong on the quarter-finals. Should he clear the fifth seed, we could be in for a rematch of the last World Championship final against Kidambi Srikanth. The Indian, who won silver at the 2018 edition of the Games, will be bouyed by their recent Thomas Cup victory and will not be an easy opponent to get past.
But if the Singaporean prevails, then likely awaiting him in the final is the tournament second seed and rising star, Lakshya Sen. World No.10 Sen is more than capable of outshining Loh as he proved during the finals of this year's India Open.
Despite the likes of Malaysia's Lee Zii Jia not taking part in the tournament, the competition remains tight at the top and it's just too close to call as to who will have the upper hand in Birmingham.
Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games : How to watch
Singapore sports fans will be able to catch Loh Kean Yew in action at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on multiple platforms offered by local broadcaster, Mediacorp.
Coverage in the host country is available on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), with events live on BBC1 and BBC2 Television channels, with all events streaming on the iPlayer and BBC website.
And if you are unable to find a screen to watch the matches, look out for Olympics.com's daily live blog from Birmingham.