THE Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) are aware of the disciplinary problems in the national team – and have already taken actions to tighten up their act.
The BAM had, in fact, decided at their last Coaching and Training (CNT) committee meeting to prevent players from visiting gaming houses or casinos during training or competitions.
The panel will also closely monitor the players’ attendance in training and, most importantly, nip any disciplinary problems in the bud. In other words, no more sweeping things under the carpet.
On Monday, former international Razif Sidek had blamed top men’s doubles pair Koo Kien Keat-Tan Boon Heong’s significant drop in form over the years to the national body not being strict enough in enforcing action against disciplinary problems.
CNT chairman Ng Chin Chai, while not singling out any particular player, acknowledged yesterday there were disciplinary issues and “we are already going all out in tackling them”.
“We’ve been dealing with it all this while … but we’ve been alerted to new situations and are looking into them,” said Chin Chai.
“We admit that there is indiscipline and that it’s not healthy for the team. We are enforcing stricter discipline.
“We discussed a few issues, like late nights and gambling habits, at the last meeting (last month) and have put certain measures in place.
“It is strictly forbidden for the players to visit gaming areas during training or competition.
They can do that during their free time. The coaches will monitor them.”
Chin Chai stressed that “BAM acted on disciplinary problems immediately and preferred to deal and ‘repair’ such issues internally”.
He also said that except for a few cases, BAM players – especially the juniors – were a disciplined lot.
Meanwhile, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin will meet with the BAM to discuss the poor performance of top pair Kien Keat-Boon Heong.
The meeting, expected to be held after the Sudirman Cup, would focus on improving their game strategy and developing the sport.
“I don’t want to comment on the performance of athletes when the tournament is going on because it is unfair,” said Khairy.
“As the minister, I want to see success in all sports including football and hockey.”