* More coaches quit and more expected to follow suit
* No takers for singles head coach
As reported, the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) has arranged a “pow-pow” in Kuching between the coaches and newly appointed technical director Morten Frost who has been given a “free hand” to decide the fate of the beleaguered coaches.
The off-court showdown will take place during the Malaysian Open Grand Prix Gold (Jan 13-18) when the BAM will also holds its council meeting. The Dane, who officially starts work in March but he will be in Kuching as a TV commentator for the Malaysian GP Gold.
The showdown is expected to sort out the mess involving the coaches but four coaches from the Bukit Jalil Sports School – Malaysia’s premier sports school which has produced many sports personalities in the past – threw in their quit letter as BAM coaches, adding more spice to the overall situation.
Those who quit were Zhou Kejian, Chong Kien Ling, Poh Chai Boon and Chin Tse Seong.
BAM have officially extended the contract of senior coaches – Rashid Sidek, Tey Seu Bok, Rosman Razak, Pang Cheh Chang, Jeremy Gan – for another three months until March after their existing contract expired on Dec 31 last year. The email informing them of the extension also spelled out their new roles.
The biggest surprise was the removal of Rashid Sidek as the singles head coach and the naming of Jeremy Gan as the men’s doubles head coach. Rashid, often the “punching bag” of BAM had his pay cut, which left many baffled.
Hopefully the ‘pow-wow” in Kuching will not be just a “MEOW” as the whole badminton world is watching what is developing in the sport in Malaysia – a sport which once Malaysia ruled. Instead, the off-court drama has seen badminton take a beating and what is in store is left to be seen after some of the talented shuttlers have quit the game in frustration.
While Jeremy Gan is ready to shoulder the responsibilities as the new men’s doubles head coach, China’s He Guo Quan has turned down the offer as head coach of the singles.
There must be reasons for him to do so – probably after watching the circus that has engulfed BAM – once the most admired national sports body in the country.