KUALA LUMPUR: The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) celebrated the National Sports Day in a grand fashion.
On Saturday (Oct 14), the national body invited 40 children between the ages from 8 to 14 from two homes - Rumah Kesayangan Petaling Jaya and the Stepping Stones Living Centre to have a fun taste of training with the national shuttlers at the Academy Badminton Malaysia (ABM) in Bukit Kiara.
The children also had a gala time as they queued up for an autograph session with Datuk Lee Chong Wei, Tan Wee Kiong, Goh Liu Ying, Vivian Hoo and Woon Khe Wei, to mention a few.
They also watched a short movie that depicted the success of Malaysian shuttlers.
Singles head coach Datuk Misbun Sidek gave an inspiring talk to the children before he led the kids to a fun session with the national shuttlers.
All the 18 courts in ABM were filled up with every child getting a chance to sweat it out.
Misbun said it was a special time for both the children and players.
“It’s a special time. I understand the plight of these children because like some of them, I’ve lost my parents too. I know the hardships they go through,” said Misbun.
He added that the event is a great opportunity for the children to rub shoulders with the icons and it’s a good way for our shuttlers to give back to the community.
“By showing the children attention and love, I believe that we have sown the seed in the heart of these children to be successful in sports. They may be less-privileged but they have a shot of becoming a badminton star if they work hard,” said Misbun.
Chong Wei was just happy to see the smiles on the faces of the children.
"This is surely a nice way to inspire these children. I'm glad to be part of it," said Chong Wei, who will be taking part in the Denmark Open in Odense next week.
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