To Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM):
While the existing team around Lee Chong Wei continue to serve him well – helping him to maintain his world number one ranking and winning several Superseries per year, after falling short in huge tournaments such as Olympics, World Championships and Asian Games over and over again, and before Chong Wei’s confidence is running dry, BAM should work on assembling a stronger team with personnel that can defeat challenges from the Chinese team.
Undoubtedly, the Chinese team is more organized, more aggressive and strategically smarter in defeating Chong Wei. Not only that they have enough talents to gang up on Chong Wei, they also applied dirty tricks such as turning off the air conditioning in Tianhe Indoor Stadium of Guangzhou during the second game of the 2013 world championships final, and their news media outlet are keen to publish all kind of negative, passive and misleading articles about Chong Wei, all in the hope of crippling Chong Wei’s self-confidence.
Chong Wei’s team often seemed stuck or overwhelmed by these challenges thrown at them from the China team. His team told reporter that they were caught off guard when Chen Long changed his strategy at the final of World Championships in August 31,2014; and gave reason such as Lin Dan played a braver style of badminton to defeat Chong Wei in the men’s singles semi-final of Incheon Asian Games. I am sure his team works hard to come into games with a set of strategies targeted at each of his opponent, but they always found themselves playing catch-up to the smarter and more sophisticated Chinese badminton team.
Lee Chong Wei is one of the most naturally gifted and talented badminton players of several generations, his strong work ethic and discipline have been integral parts of his repertoire for the past decade. Nevertheless, history has proven many times that he can’t reach new heights in his career through his current team.
Today is September 30, 2014, there are only 675 days left until the opening of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in Brazil, and much still need to be done to improve Chong Wei’s chances at the Rio Olympics (note: we just want to increase his chances, there is no guarantee he will win gold medal at Rio Olympics, and we don’t want to put unnecessary pressure on him).
Talent wins regular tournaments, but teamwork and intelligence wins huge championships. Chong Wei’s talent shouldn’t be wasted, we hope BAM could start surrounding Chong Wei with a seasoned and experienced team, that can bring new approach and competitive intelligence to help him outperform the competitors. It’s definitely a huge challenge to put together a great and competitive new team without messing up the existing team synergy. If it is done right, not only Chong Wei would benefit from the new team, the new team could also help prepare Malaysia national badminton team for Lee Chong Wei’s eventual retirement from the sport of badminton.