KUALA LUMPUR: Another 20 badminton players are expected to be dropped from the national team following the exits of Chooi Kah Ming and Tee Jing Yi.
Seniors Kah Ming (men’s doubles) and Jing Yi (women’s singles) tendered their resignations this week – just days before the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) coaching and training committee (CNT) meeting, scheduled on Monday.
And Kah Ming’s partner Low Juan Shen is expected to follow suit soon.
CNT chairman Datuk Ng Chin Chai said they were going forward with their decision to keep the national team lean and mean.
“We’ve 80 players under our set-up but we’ll drop about 20 on Monday after discussions with the national coaches,” said Chin Chai, who is also the BAM’s secretary.
“The coaches have spoken to some of them. Some may wait for us to drop them but some may decide to leave earlier.
“We expected that.”
The 27-year Kah Ming said he would continue playing as a professional player after ending his 14-year tie with BAM.
“I’ve been given the blessing by BAM to play as a professional. I can take part in major Open tournaments,” said Kah Ming, who joined the BAM junior programme when he was 13.
Kah Ming made heads turn when he won the world junior title in 2009 with Ow Yao Han and a year later, he made the grade into the national senior team.
He has won several International Challenge and Satellite tournaments with Low Juan Shen but they’ve always fallen short in major tournaments.
“Juan Shen and I may try our fortunes as professional players after this. Our world ranking is still quite high and it should not be a problem to qualify for Open tournaments,” said Kah Ming.
Kah Ming-Juan Shen are ranked 44th in the world and are the country’s third ranked pair behind Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong (14th) and Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi (30).