Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Continued support assured

THE National Sports Institute (NSI) will continue giving full support to the BA of Malaysia (BAM) by providing a dedicated team of sports science specialists to ensure the shuttlers aim of winning gold in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics remains on track.

NSI chief executive officer (CEO) Ahmad Shapawi Ismail said although there is a shortage of sports science experts, badminton is one of the high profile sports which will receive continued support due to its potential to win gold in Rio.

NSI had also provided a dedicated team, under the leadership of Roesdi Ghani, for the Road to London 2012 programme where Malaysia secured a silver medal through Lee Chong Wei.

"Badminton is one of the main sports under the 2016 Olympics programme and it will receive our continued support. We provided a dedicated team to national shuttlers and the efforts will continue," said Shapawi.

"Although we are short of experienced sports science experts, we can still accommodate a team for badminton which still has the potential to win gold in Rio.

"Roesdi will be the main person in charge and will get several assistants to help prepare a bigger pool of players.

"I also believe that the success of the sports science staff will also depend on the co-operation of the coaches and the commitment of the players who must have faith in the sports science approach."

Roesdi, who specifically looked after Chong Wei and other senior players, will also get assistance from the experienced Sean Sturgess who could also play a big role in helping the doubles.

The efforts of Sturgess was one of the main reasons Malaysia had about five top class pairs between 2005 and 2007 but their fitness became a major concern when Rexy Mainaky opted for other physical conditioning experts after that.

Sturgess went on to become the sports science co-ordinator for archery, badminton, cycling and diving for the 2012 Olympics which didn't give him the opportunity to have a direct impact on the shuttlers.

However, Sturgess has been conducting two physical training sessions per week for the men's doubles after a request from chief coach Tan Kim Her but it could be increased if the former gets the greenlight from NSI.

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