Loh’s a high gain for Lion City


Lend me your ears: Coach Loh Wei Sheng instructing women’s singles player Eoon Qi Xuan during the Asia Team Championships in February.

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia badminton has lost another national coach in Loh Wei Sheng but it was Singapore’s gain again.

Wei Sheng, who has been a women’s singles coach with the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) since 2018, has left for the Lion City to take up a job as the assistant men’s singles coach.

The 30-year-old former international was left alone to man the women’s singles department at the start of this year after the departure of Indra Wijaya of Indonesia but eventually resumed assisting newly appointed head James Chua two months ago.

The 2010 Asian junior runner-up is the second Malaysian in Singapore’s coaching set-up besides Lim Pek Siah, who is heading the doubles department. Former doubles great Yap Kim Hock was also in the southern neighbours’ stable but he left last year.

Wei Sheng’s sudden departure has left another void in the beleaguered women’s singles department but national singles coaching director Wong Choong Hann took it in his stride.

In fact, Choong Hann said the hiring of Wei Sheng by Singapore showed Malaysia’s coaches had the quality.

“Yes, we knew about Wei Sheng’s move during the Japan Open. It’s a new career path for him and we wish him the best,” said Choong Hann.

“It’s good that our coaches are in demand abroad. We’ve invested in their coaching careers but this is an opportunity for them to enrich their coaching experience.”

Choong Hann said they would be out to find a substitute for Wei Sheng to strengthen the department.

“We’re not too worried as we have James with us right now but he will need assistance. We will be on the lookout for a new coach,” he said.

Those in the women’s singles team are S. Kisona, Eoon Qi Xuan, Myisha Khairul, Siti Nurshuhaini Azman, Joanne Ng, Tan Zhing Yi, Kho Jing Wen and Loh Zhi Wei.

Meanwhile, Choong Hann is happy with the progress shown by the men’s singles, especially Ng Tze Yong, Leong Jun Hao and Mohd Aidil Sholeh Ali Sadikin, who are under the guidance of Hendrawan and Datuk Tey Seu Bock.

Tze Yong did well to win one gold (team) and one silver (individual) at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and fought well before bowing out in the second round of the World Championships in Tokyo, Japan.

“He has been registered for the Denmark Open but he is on the reserve list, but if he can’t make the cut, we will quickly pull out and register him for the Indonesian Masters (Oct 18-23 in Malang) which is held at the same time with the meet in Europe,” he said.

“We are also pleased with Jun Hao and Aidil. Jun Hao would have been far ahead if not for injuries but he is on the right track now and I see great potential in Aidil.

“They have been working really hard in training and I do hope they will get their due reward soon with breakthrough wins,” added Choong Hann.

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