By : K.M. Boopathy
FORMER national singles coach Li Mao has slammed the BA of Malaysia's (BAM) training attitude for hampering the nation from producing world class shuttlers.
Former national singles coach Li Mao.
Li Mao said the complicated system the BAM adopts doesn't allow a junior player with potential based at the Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS), or a back-up shuttler in the 2010-2012 Project squad, to be drafted into the national senior squad, and this was one reason why he decided to quit BAM last January.
The coach had made a request to BAM for some of the players with potential from BJSS and the 2010-2012 Project squad but was turned down.
"I've never come across such a ridiculous system in any country where your best players are not allowed to train with the national senior squad. This is the main reason why I left," said Li Mao at the Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil yesterday.
"The idea is always to see the older players guiding the younger ones. This can only happen if the younger ones are allowed to spar with the seniors but it doesn't happen here.
"BJSS players are allowed to train with the Project Squad under Rashid (Sidek) but I wasn't given the liberty to choose any. How can I produce more top class players like (Lee) Chong Wei.
"In China, we can select any player with potential from anywhere. When I talk about Chong Wei, his titles come to my mind, but there is no other good memories.
"I could not say this when I was still coaching here as it would have invited problems but I can talk about it now."
Li Mao, who is now the singles coach with the South Korea squad, also said disunity among the singles and doubles players during his tenure in Malaysia also plagued the Malaysian game.
Li Mao said the Koreans are united in training and tournaments but this spirit is missing among Malaysian players.
"There is no unity. Singles players are on their own while the doubles players keep to themselves.
"They are very individualistic. The victories of a player are never acknowledged and instead there are a lot of unhappy faces."
BAM may be under the impression that this is Li Mao's way of getting back at them, but nonetheless, it should be looked into to see if the situation still exists with the national players.