KUALA LUMPUR: The Ng brothers, Shu Wai and Shu Mun, are in troubled waters again for indiscipline.
The two national artistic gymnasts were suspended yesterday after going missing from training for more than a week. And the duo face the sack if they do not respond to the show cause letter within a week.
The decision made by the joint working committee of the National Sports Council (NSC) and Malaysian Gymnastics Federation (MGF) has put the spanner at works of Malaysia's preparation for the World Championships, which will be held in Stuttgart from Sept 1-8.
The championships are qualifiers for the Beijing Olympics next year and two-time Commonwealth Games silver medallist Shu Wai has a realistic chance to make the grade.
The 21-year-old Shu Wai had also gone absent from training just a month ago after he parted company with Chinese coach Zhang Jun.
The NSC appointed Pavel Todorov as the replacement and the partnership between Shu Wai and the Bulgarian took off well until the gymnast's request to train in Canada on June 29 was turned down by the NSC.
The NSC director general, Datuk Zolkples Embong, was disappointed, especially with Shu Wai for ignoring all efforts made to get in touch with him since he went AWOL.
“His coach (Pavel Todorov) alerted us on his absence. The coach and our officials tried to get in touch with him but he showed disrespect by ignoring all our attempts,” said Zolkples. “The coach even went to his house. Shu Wai and his brother were reluctant to see him. They told Pavel that they wanted to quit the sport because of personal problems.
“We have accommodated so many of Shu Wai's requests. We gave him the best coaches, sent him for training stints in China and now he has done this. We do not want this type of athletes in our programme. We prefer to train younger ones who are disciplined and hungry for success.”
The NSC spent US$4,650 a month on Shu Wai alone for his more than two years in China at their national training centre in Beijing.
Zolkples said that they would give Shu Wai one more chance to realise his Olympic dream.
“The show cause letter will be sent to him tomorrow. We will welcome him back but we will no longer tolerate such behaviour,” he added.
Both Todorov and the MGF hoped that Shu Wai would come to his senses and return to the fold.
Said the Bulgarian: “I believe in giving athletes a second chance. I want to reach out to Shu Wai and Shu Mun.
“I want them to know that whatever the problems or how severe they may appear, they will always have our love and support. There is always a hope and if there is a will, the situation can be resolved. This is not only their dream but also the Malaysian dream.”
MGF president Datuk Dr Zakaria Ahmad urged Shu Wai to not waste his talent.
“Pavel has plans for him to even break among the top three in the upcoming world meet. He can make it. I am just so disappointed at this moment that he has chosen to throw all that away.”
If Shu Wai and Shu Mun choose to opt out, the MGF will name three other men for the world championships after selection trials in Bukit Jalil on Aug 4 and 5.
Shu Wai has also ran into other cases of indiscipline. Together with his team-mates, they were handed show cause letters for going against the MGF for snubbing the Asia Pacific Alliance tournament in Hawaii last year.
Shu Wai was also reprimanded for venting his anger at the judges of the 2003 SEA Games in Hanoi by throwing his silver medal.