The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) have dropped three national men’s singles shuttlers from the national team after a detailed analysis of their performance on and off the court this year.
The three shuttlers who are chopped are Lee Shun Yang, Chia Jeng Hon and Rex Hooi, but Lee will be offered a sparring partner full-time role to help the back-up and elite shuttlers.
The analysis data includes these shuttlers’ tournament results, win loss percentage as well as their attitude and responsiveness in training.
Among the three dropped, Lee is ranked the highest at 142 with a bronze medal at this year’s SEA Games.
Other developments also saw the national men’s singles contingent divided into two groups.
Group A will consist of the national elite shuttlers led by Ng Tze Yong, Leong Jun Hao, Justin Hoh, Aidil Sholeh and Eogene Ewe.
Group B is made up of Shaqeem Eiman, Jacky Kok, Chua Kim Sheng, Ong Zhen Yi and Ong Ken Yon.
The elite shuttlers will have the luxury of competing in 12-14 tournaments a year, while the back-up players will only compete in up to six events next year.
But in the spirit of fair play and transparency, these groups will not remain definitive and rather be subjected to the players’ performance.
“The back-up shuttlers can be promoted to the elite category if they produce good results in tournaments, and the same goes for the elite shuttlers,” said national coaching director Rexy Mainaky.
The Indonesian also warned the shuttlers they are bound for criticism if they underperform.
“We cannot be praising them if they are not performing. If we keep doing this, they will not improve. We criticize the players because we care about them. We need to be tough on them when the results are not showing,” he added.
Among the elite shuttlers, plenty of attention will be paid to Ng as he aims to make his Olympics debut in Paris next year.
The Johor-born has had a good year and is in the automatic qualifying spots to the Olympics, but there will be intense competition that lies ahead as he tries to make it as the top 16 men’s singles shuttler.