Badminton Life

Rashid's Wishes to be Granted

The pleas of Rashid Sidek, who is expected to soon be Malaysia's chief singles coach for the London Olympics in 2012, has resonated with the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM).

BAM has decided to heed Rashid's advice and open up the possibility of back-up singles players taking part in more international tournaments.

Rashid is in charge of the 2010-2012 programme to train players for the major events during that time period, including the Olympics.

However, he is expected to be put in charge of the overall singles programme for Malaysian badminton players.

He has been pleading for second-tier singles players to be given more opportunities and, now, it seems that his wishes are being granted.

His argument is that the back-up players need to have the exposure against top-class players in order to improve.

BAM general manager Kenny Goh said the body was eager to boost the development of these players in order to enhance Malaysia's chances of winning a medal at the London Games.

Chong Wei Feng, Tan Chun Seang, Liew Daren and Arif Latif are among the singles players that Rashid is hoping to throw into the big stage, which means the Badminton World Federation's Super Series tournaments.

"The BAM management is keen on any programme which is geared towards the London Olympics but Rashid's suggestion has to be followed up with a comprehensive plan regarding the players concerned," Goh was quoted as saying in the local media.

"The programme should be at least for a year so that BAM is aware there is continuity. The younger players definitely will get their opportunities with the 2012 Olympics in mind and everything will depend on the programmes prepared by the coaches."

Rashid, a former Olympic bronze medallist, has been asked to submit a proposal to the coaching and training committee, which is expected to meet later this month.

The coach is expected to suggest Super Series tournaments closer to home in order to cut down on travelling costs and also help the players adapt to tournament conditions.

His ideas have also apparently been viewed positively by the National Sports Council, which means his proposals have a good chance of being accepted.

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