KUALA LUMPUR: Badminton icon Lee Chong Wei is the right candidate to be Malaysia’s chef-de-mission for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Malaysian Athletics Federation (MAF) president Datuk Karim Ibrahim (pic) said this during the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) Hari Raya celebration at Wisma OCM yesterday.
“Chong Wei is a great athlete and he’s the most suitable person to be the chef-de-mission as he has won the most number of Olympics medals (three silvers in the men’s singles events). He’s also the former world No. 1 badminton singles player.
“He has also won a number of major titles in his career and is a hero and idol to many young athletes not only in Malaysia but throughout the world.
“I believe a former athlete should be the chef-de-mission for the Olympics as they always inspire the young and up-and-coming athletes to be like them,” said Karim, who will be defending his MAF president’s post for the third term.
The nomination for all posts will close on Monday and the annual general meeting will be held on June 30.
The outspoken Karim, who has been the president since 2014, said he is ready to face anyone for the post of president.
“Anyone can stand for any post but please don’t play dirty politics to downgrade others. There are some officials who use social media to hit out at me.
“To me, what’s important is the athletes’ performances and administration of the association,” said Karim.
When ask whether he has the full support of the affiliates, he says that he always has strong support from them and that’s why he is defending his post for a third term.
“During my term, we’ve done well by winning eight golds in the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games in 2017 and I’m also doing my best to hire former American coach Dwayne Miller to lift the standard of athletics,” said Karim.
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