Health comes first for Tze Yong, says BAM president Norza

PETALING JAYA: National shuttler Ng Tze Yong’s injury set to cost him his Olympic dreams, but health comes first.

Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) president Tan Sir Norza Zakaria said prioritising Tze Yong’s health is the wise choice, even if it means sacrificing his Olympic qualification.

The 23-year-old men’s singles shuttler sustained a spinal disc injury during the Asia Team Championships recently while recovering from a lower back muscle tear he got during the Malaysian Open last month.

Yesterday, it was confirmed that he would undergo a surgery, which means, he will withdraw from the French Open (Mar 5-10) and All-England (Mar 12-17).

“Tze Yong is still under observation and treatment with the National Sports Institute (ISN) together with BAM,” said Norza after the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) executive council meeting at the Academy Badminton Malaysia (ABM).

“We do hope his injury won’t hinder his chance to qualify for the Olympics through tournaments in the coming months.

“But we place his health above qualifying for Paris and above anything else.

“We don’t want to allow him to play only for his injury to become long-term or untreatable.”

Norza said the cautious approach would be based on the medical reports, from which they will determine which tournaments Tze Yong could take to the court.

“We have to see in detail if he should continue attempting to qualify for Paris. We can’t tell the time it would take for a full recovery.

“At the moment he is not training, we are fully focusing on his treatment.

“All those involved in his recovery need to discuss thoroughly. We don’t want to force and push him if he doesn’t feel ready,” he said.

At the same time, Norza announced that OCM will host the Olympic Solidarity (OS)-Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) Regional Forum for East and Southeast Asian National Olympic Committees (NOCs) in Kuala Lumpur from May 3-4.

He added that former national diver Cheong Jun Hoong had been selected to participate in the Empowering Youth Capacity Building (eqUIP) Internship programme for 2024, organised by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) in Kuala Lumpur.

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