PETALING JAYA: Disgraced shuttlers Zulfadli Zulkiffli and Tan Chun Seang could face a lifetime ban if they decide to appeal against the Badminton World Federation (BWF) decision.
Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) Rules, Disciplinary and Integrity Committee member Jadaddish Chandra said the suspension may even be extended if the appeal goes awry.
“At the appeal, their sentence may be reduced. But they must also know that there is a likelihood that BWF may uphold the verdict or even increase the sentence,” said Jadaddish.
BWF came down hard on Zulfadli and Chun Seang, both of whom were found guilty of match-fixing, by handing them 20 and 15 years ban respectively from all badminton activities.
The pair were also slapped with a US$25,000 (RM98,000) and US$15,000 (RM59,000) fine respectively.
They have the option of filing an appeal within 21 days but they must first pay up the entire fine and an additional US$500 (RM1,966) each for the appeal.
“The 20 and 15 years ban seem excessive but it’s not a life sentence. They can still come back as coaches once they serve their time.
“But if they are banned for life then that’s it. There’s no coming back from that.
“BAM must be seen as impartial. The players must now go to their own lawyers and make the best decision for themselves.”
Jadaddish added that former world junior champion Zulfadli may be allowed to keep his 2016 Brazil Open title.
The Brazil meet was the tournament that first brought the case to light as a shuttler had reported that Zulfadli required assistance to manipulate the outcome of a match.
“BWF’s decision did not indicate if they would strip his title. We’ll just assume he’ll be allowed to keep it,” he said.
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