THE players, not the BA of Malaysia, decided resulting in Wong Tat Meng being appointed by the BA of Malaysia as the national singles chief coach yesterday.
The players apparently felt that Tat Meng, who had assisted Li Mao for two years, was a better choice ahead of Rashid Sidek (picture).
Not only was Rashid sidelined from playing a prominent role in the national senior squad, none of his players from the 2010-2012 Project were promoted as BAM felt that the non-performing James Chua, K. Yogendran and Yeoh Kay Bin are playing a major role as sparring partners to Lee Chong Wei, Wong Choong Hann and Kuan Beng Hong.
Misbun Sidek, while allowed to keep Hafiz Hashim under his wings, was given the additional responsibility of grooming Project squad players Chan Kwong Beng, Lok Chong Chieh, Zairul Hafiz Zainuddin and Syed Akhbar.
BAM president Datuk Nadzmi Salleh, who chaired the executive council meeting yesterday, said Tat Meng was the choice as he has followed and understands Li Maos training methods.
More importantly, the players didnt want the current set-up to be disrupted any more, especially after Li Mao left them in a lurch by accepting a job with the South Korean BA..
"Tat Meng has followed Li Maos training methods for two years and he understands the style. The feedback from the players was that they dont want their training to be disrupted as it is too close to the World Championships (in August)," said Nadzmi.
"We believe that Tat Meng will be able to continue with the current programme. We considered the fact that getting a new coach would mean the players taking a longer period to adapt which wont do as the World Championships are approaching and the Olympic qualifying period begins soon.
"Misbun will continue training Hafiz but some of Rashids players will also train under him. Rashid will remain as the head coach of 2010-2012 Project as he has been doing a good job.
"We also want to give James, Kay Bin and Yogendran a chance to continue until the World Championships and the coach will decide whether he needs their services after that.
"There will also be regular joint training sessions between the 2010-2012 Project and the national senior squad which will be beneficial for players from both groups."
Tat Meng said he is looking forward to the challenge of producing better results than Li Mao.
"It is going to be the biggest challenge for me as we have not achieved a major success since 2003. My objective is to do that," said Tat Meng.
"The immediate task is to help Chong Wei regain his confidence and help the other players to continue progressing."