Rexy is now ABM coaching director

PETALING JAYA: Academy Badminton Malaysia (ABM) doubles coaching director Rexy Mainaky is now shouldering heavy responsibility as he has been redesignated as ABM coaching director.

Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) secretary-general Datuk Kenny Goh (pix) said this move was taken because ABM wanted just one coaching director to take charge of both the national singles and doubles camps.

“ABM has yet to make an official announcement but you may have noticed that Rexy has taken over as the ABM coaching director overall.

“Rexy’s first assignment is the ongoing 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games,“ he told reporters after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between local badminton club New Vision Badminton Academy (NVBA) and the Badminton Confederation of Africa (BCA) here today.

Last June, the ABM singles coaching director’s post fell vacant after Wong Choong Hann resigned and left for Hong Kong to serve as that country’s singles chief coach, leaving Rexy to indirectly oversee the singles players at the academy.

Kenny said Rexy was the best choice for the top post as he possessed vast experience with his own country Indonesia and also Thailand, apart from having guided Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik to create history for Malaysia by winning the men’s doubles world title last year.

On the replacement for former ABM junior singles coaching director Datuk Misbun Sidek, Kenny said they were still assessing candidates for the post.

On the Asian Games, Kenny is optimistic that the men’s team would give their best in the hunt for gold although they have a difficult first-round match against South Korea.

If Malaysia qualify for the quarter-finals, they are expected to meet archrivals Indonesia, who have a first-round bye.

Malaysia, who are skipping the women’s team event, are fielding their best in the men’s competition, including Aaron-Wooi Yik, 2021 All England champion Lee Zii Jia and 2022 Commonwealth Games men’s singles silver medallist Ng Tze Yong.

Meanwhile, NVBA director Sugita Kunalan said the four-year MoU signified a landmark moment for both parties as they joined forces to nurture talent and foster excellence in sports.

She said the highlights of the MoU included elite player exchange whereby BCA will identify exceptional African players and send them to train with NVBA in a bid to maximise their potential; a coach exchange programme and leveraging of their networks to assist BCA secure sponsorships for development initiatives.

“We are proud to mark another significant milestone through this MoU this time with BCA to help grow foreign talents. NVBA always welcome international players and several national teams have trained with us since 2010 as part of their preparations for events such as the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games and World Championships,” she said.

BCA chief executive officer Jeff Shigoli said they picked Malaysia to develop their continental players as it is one of the top badminton nations.

“We want to learn from the best and look forward to getting our players to the level where Malaysian shuttlers are,” he said.

BAM deputy president I Datuk V. Subramaniam, who was also present at the event, said they were happy to see the local club come out with such programmes to help needy countries in nurturing talents for badminton. –Bernama