PETALING JAYA: Former men’s doubles ace Chan Chong Ming is glad to be back with the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) after a 12-year hiatus.
The 40-year-old Chong Ming, hired to replace Rosman Razak as the head coach, will be tasked with reviving the flagging women’s doubles department.
Chong Ming, who was once Malaysia’s national No. 1 pair with Chew Choon Eng before leaving BAM in December 2007, was happy to return home.
He left BAM to play under the independent banner for four years with Choon Eng and Wong Choong Hann before he turned to coaching juniors at the Pioneer Badminton Academy.
“This is my first duty in BAM since I left 12 years ago but this time, I’ll be a coach,” said Chong Ming, who was twice the bronze medallist at the World Championships in 2001 (men’s doubles with Choon Eng) and 2005 (men’s doubles with Koo Kien Keat).
“I know it will not be easy but I’m looking forward to the new challenge.”
And it will definitely be a challenge for Chong Ming as the women’s doubles is considered the weakest department.
Following the departure of Woon Khe Wei after reaching the quarter-finals with Vivian Hoo at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, the women players have not achieved any major Open victories.
“I’ll find out more about the players first. Then, I can plan ahead. I’m grateful I will have capable assistants,” he said.
Chong Ming will be supported by two coaches – Chin Eei Hui and Wong Pei Tty, who were once ranked as the world No. 1 pair during their playing days.
“They’ll have better knowledge and together, we’ll do our best to improve the standard of the players.”
Chong Ming almost didn’t return to the national fold as he had planned to coach one of the clubs in Japan in April but the Covid-19 pandemic had put paid to his plan.
The other Malaysians already in Japan with the national team as coaches are Jeremy Gan (mixed doubles), Tan Kim Her (men’s doubles) and Lee Wan Wah (juniors).
“It’s all too sudden for me. I was to join one of the clubs but it did not work out as we could not travel out. Anyway, a good thing has come out of it,” said Chong Ming.
“I left BAM as a bachelor but now, I’ve returned as a father of three children,” he quipped.
His experience and maturity in the game, however, will surely come in handy as he bids to turn the women’s doubles into a force to be reckoned with.
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