Keep the coaches for Paralympics gold, says Liek Hou

  • Badminton
  • Tuesday, 19 Nov 2019

PETALING JAYA: After his triumph at the just-concluded Japan Para-badminton International, national para shuttler Cheah Liek Hou is hoping to continue training under volunteer coaches Rashid Sidek and Indonesian Nova Armada until the Paralympic Games in Tokyo next August.

Liek Hou has been training under former international Rashid and 1996 Atlanta Olympics bronze medallist Nova at the Sports Affairs Academy in Cheras under a special arrangement between the National Sports Council (NSC) and the coaches.

The two are helping Liek Hou on a voluntarily basis, although the NSC do pay for the two coaches’ travel expenses for competitions.

The 31-year-old Liek Hou said the two coaches had been instrumental in helping to raise his game.

“My performance has improved by leaps and bounds since I started training under Rashid and Nova, so I really hope both of them will be included in the Tokyo Paralympics plans,” said Liek Hou.

“In the past few months, they have been doing it voluntarily. They receive no salary but I hope they can be part of the plan starting next January. As the results show, I was able to secure three victories thanks to them.

“I believe they can help me realise my dream of becoming Paralympics gold medallist.

“It will be crucial for me to have a clear plan and direction from January. There’s not much time left.”Badminton will be making its debut at the Tokyo Paralympics and it raises medal hopes for Malaysia, especially through Liek Hou in the SU5 men’s singles class (impairment in upper body).

Liek Hou was a six-time world champion before losing his crown at the recent world meet in Basel, Switzerland, in August.

But he has proven he is the man to beat, winning tournaments in Thailand, Denmark and, on Sunday, in Tokyo.

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