KUALA LUMPUR: Bad performances and match-fixing. The link exits in football but has it got to badminton as well?
In the recent World Championships, Malaysia saw some uncharacteristically poor performances from their shuttlers and only the veteran men’s doubles pair of Choong Tan Fook-Lee Wan Wah finished with a medal – a bronze.
The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) president, Datuk Mohd Nadzmi Mohd Salleh, does not think that their players are involved in match-fixing.
But he warned that the BAM would take stern action if any of their players, coaches or officials were found to have a hand in it.
“I have never received a report on our players or coaches being involved in it,” said Nadzmi.
He added that there would be a review to find out why Malaysia failed again in the World Championships and a forum would also be held with the players. And if necessary, he would warn the players on the dangers of match-fixing during the dialogue.
“We have decided to hold a forum with the players before each major tournament. Now we will have one after the World Championships. It will be an avenue for them to be open to us,” said Nadzmi.
“In this meeting, I want the players to talk about everything. And I will also warn them to stay away from bookies and others with the intention to manipulate the outcome of a match.
“I have never brought up this subject before. But we will certainly take action if any of our players or coaches have links with them.”
On the issue of betting on the Internet on matches in the World Championships, Nadzmi said he was surprised to hear about it.
“I did not know that people bet on badminton too. This is news to me. But as a parent body, we do not like any kind of betting. We are managing the sport and this may affect the sport in a negative way,” he said.
A check at www.ladbrokes.com revealed that matches in the championships at the Putra Stadium last week were up for betting.
And one can start betting on their favourite players for the Beijing Olympics at www.bet365.com.
In Malaysia, all forms of sports betting, except for horse racing, is illegal. Other forms of gambling, among them lotto and gaming in casinos, are allowed but Muslims are prohibited from indulging in such activities.