MISBUN SIDEK is a man who has a burning passion for badminton and at the age of 43, he can still give the youngsters a run for their money. Last week, he won the Selangor Open men's singles and veteran's title - the first player in the state to do so. He will be embarking on an even bigger challenge from today as he officially takes up the singles players. The enigmatic former national number one, in the interview with STARSPORT's LIM TEIK HUAT Tuesday, talked about his hopes and what he wanted from the player.
THIS is my last day working as a coach with Nusa Mahsuri (professional badminton club) . I will officially be with the BAM from tomorrow.
But the way I see it, it is still the same job. It's just that I will be doing my work in a new house. But this house is the home of Malaysian badminton and with it comes enormous responsibilities.
At Nusa Mahsuri, I only handled players for the club and prepared them to win at state or national level. At the BAM, the scope will be different. I will be dealing with players who are fighting to win glory for the country.
Nobody is perfect but when I take up this job, I want to make sure that this house, which I am taking care of, must not only look good on the outside but also inside.
I have yet to sit and discuss further with the BAM on the specific plans they have for the players at their Academy next year even though the coaching set-up has already been finalised.
However, there is a need to set up comprehensive training programmes to produce the desired results.
If the BAM want to have a smaller group, I have to identify the players I want. If one talks about a small squad, I need performance players, not ordinary ones.
I will give those who want to play the chances but if they cannot perform, they have to go.
The idea of a sound base of players I want to have in the BAM is similar to a pyramid system – only a few really good players at the top. However, there must be many players waiting to step in as soon as those at the top slacken.
The juniors do not have to worry that I will ignore them and leave everything completely to my assistants (Rashid Sidek, Ahmad Basri Yusof and Tey Seu Bok).
I want them to spar with the seniors and this was why I suggested bringing all the players under one roof. The juniors will never go up if they do not play with the seniors. Mohamad Hafiz Hashim was able to come up quickly in a short time of two years because he was able to check the strong points of Rashid and Roslin Hashim and have the ability to overcome them.
However, sparring is not the sole solution. To become a top player, one also has to improve on match skills.
It is no use putting the players through match-play situations if he does not have sound match-skills. Putting a player through a match-play situation only improves on his match temperament.
No two players are the same and they all need different training needs. I have my own training programme and I can be flexible with them on this matter but I just want them to be honest with themselves from the start.
I would prefer a player who comes to me with a 30 to 40 percentage in terms of basic skills but who can follow the whole training programme. He must also be ready to go the extra mile and not be easily contented with what he has achieved so far.
Then, I know that I can push him to the limit and make him a champion.
The worst type of player is one who cheats on himself and does not go through his training programme sincerely. I will not tolerate this type of player in my team.
In my playing days, I had the respect of many top players for my skills but I did not have the staying power to go all the way to win a major title.
I changed my hairstyle to a Mohican one because it was to remind myself of my goal to reach the top.
When I was a player, I wanted to try out new methods to achieve my goal. After all those experiences, I do not want my players to face similar disappointments.
A player must not just become a world-beater but must have the ability to win major titles, including gold at the Olympics and World Championships. When you have done so, the number one ranking will naturally come to you.
As for big tournaments, everyone gets a chance to go and it is not just limited to the top players. But first, they have to justify their participation by being ranked among the top 15, at least.
As for BAM players who want to go and train on his own, they are welcome to do so.
It is fine and they can stay in the BAM if they meet their target. But I do not want them if they fail to reach their target. They must be aware first that they went out to prove me wrong in the first place.
In any working situation, there must always be a leader. But then, there is no leader who does not listen to members of his team. I can be strict but I am understanding as well.
All said, I am looking forward to the new challenges.