Take a cue from Boe

The winning mentality: Mathias Boe was in the Denmark team that won their first Thomas Cup in 2016 and now he has lifted the Cup as a coach with India.

BANGKOK: A thriving league system is the answer for players to handle the pressure better.

And that’s the reason why players from Denmark are cool when playing under tense moments or against one another in international tournaments.

“I’ve played in the domestic league for 20 years in my country and it teaches you to deal with all kinds of pressures,” said Dane Mathias Boe, who is currently a coach with the successful Thomas-Cup winning team India.

“I’ve played against my own teammates in this league and have coached players in the league. It’s a big part of our culture in Denmark.

“That’s why I can sit with India and watch the tie against Denmark (India won 3-2 in the semi-finals). Seeing my friends, some of them from the side that I won the Thomas Cup with six years back, did not affect me,” added Boe, who believes that playing regularly in a competitive league at home sets players on the path for glory.

India, too, have a regular league in their country.

“I’ve imparted what I’ve learnt from Denmark to the Indian doubles. I want to add more tactical approaches for the top pair (Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty).

‘‘They have power and speed, and if we can apply more tactics with their venomous attack, they will be even more stronger.”

While leagues in Denmark and India are producing talents in the game and improving the level of coaches in their country and building players, who hardly get a chance to play due to limited spots in the national team, Malaysia may have made a grave mistake by neglecting this part.

If not for the Purple League, an initiative by the private sector and former players, the league system is completely dead in the country.

The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) have focused so much on the top by strengthening their national training centre, that the leagues are weak in the states.

But that does not come as a surprise as some of the badminton leaders are weak at the state level, mostly waiting for handouts from the national body without taking the initiative.

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