MALACCA: In conforming with its policy of “catch ‘em young”, the Malacca Badminton Association’s (MBA) annual year-end coaching clinics at its own five-court hall in Jalan Tengkera yielded 13 very promising potentials to be drafted into the association’s Elite Coaching Scheme come early 2013.
According to MBA coaching panel head Choy Ah Sang, the six boys and seven girls whose potential were spotted, came through the ranks of some 61 children between the ages of six and 10 years from primary schools in the state that enthusiastically turned up for the clinic’s two-day duration in the midst of the final term school holidays.
Said Choy: “Accompanied by parents, guardians and senior family members, the youngsters realised that it was worthwhile to pursue a professional badminton career.
“It is through a systematic training, coaching and grooming programmes as well as sessions conducted by qualified coaches that give trainees’ hope to represent the state and donning national colours at age group, junior or senior levels,” he said.
Choy urged parents and guardians to give their blessings because, apart from encouragement and support, they can also help their children dedicate themselves to badminton and not switch to other sports after undergoing the one or two-year training provided by MBA.
He added that the association’s schemes cater for players in the Under 7, 12, 14, 16 and 18 age groups.
According to MBA president Datuk Dr Khoo Kim Eng, the revamped local coaching and training scheme was effective in producing promising players to be drafted into training squads run by the Bukit Jalil Sports Council (BJSC) and the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM).
He added that with the support of long-term sponsorships in both cash and merchandise, all aspects of the game’s development and promotion are looked into in-depth.
The newest recruits from Malacca to join the BJSC fold through MBA’s scheme are Tai An Khang, Ong Yew Sin and Boon Xin Yuan (boys category) and Yap Cheng Wen and Anna Cheong Ching Yik (girls category).
Among the current crop of local players hitting the limelight under the BAM banner are Ong Jian Guo, Ow Yao Han and Goh Soon Huat (men) and Goh Liu Ying and Lee Meang Yean (women).