Friday, 11 April 2014

WHATS IN THE ID?

What does a BAM ID mean to the boys? They may not realize it but you can sense the zeal for it like a holy grail of badminton. I see it more like an aspiration for the boys to avail themselves the opportunity to be up there with the cream. Again I go back to this maxim, “To run as fast as a gazelle, you must be in the herd of the gazelles.”

It’s also a ticket to participate in BAM sanctioned tournaments, like a tertiary pool for BAM to search for grass root talents. The secondary pool being Bukit Jalil Sports School (in which national juniors are picked from) and the primary pool, the national back-up squad. Of late, BAM is also keeping their eyes open for worthy independent players who are scattered all over private clubs with reference to ex-BAM players who quit from the national team.

Therefore, the ID, looks as though it’s a passport and a stepping stone to BAM’s institution of badminton albeit not essential but it’s something advantageous to have. The boys may not understand the significance of it yet but they know it has an aura of status by having one. The important thing is, they know to live with it, they have to work very hard. That to me is a reason enough as any to have an ID. 

Thursday, 10 April 2014

MSSD 2014

SRKC Ladang Harcroft Puchong - swept 3 titles
This year’s MSSD Petaling Perdana District was held in MBA, the boy’s old home training ground. The only regret I had was I could not attend their games due to my work commitments. Nevertheless, they were in good hands as their school teachers and PTA volunteers were there to see to their needs.

Since the school could only submit 2 names for U12 singles and 2 pairs for U12 doubles, Aaron was chosen ahead of his older brother to play second singles. Lee Jie Quan remained the first choice. In doubles, Ryan was paired up with Lee Jie Quan since they have some chemistry going on between them while Aaron was paired with Tan Jie Yang as second doubles.

Jie Quan/Ryan Boys U12 Doubles Champion
In the singles event, Jie Quan went all the way up to quarter final before he faltered under the hands of a Selangor player Muazzam Danish.  Aaron had a bye in the first round. In the second round he was drawn to play with his PutraJaya mate, Darren Tan. We did not expect Aaron to be troubled since he had a good winning streak against Darren of late. Unexpectedly, he did lose and terribly as well. We wondered how was it that he caught a Liew Darren syndrome. We suspected it could be due to a mild strain on both his knee.

Fortunately, the disappointment in his early elimination in singles was made up with good doubles performance with his partner Tan Jie Yang.  This 11 year old pair did the unexpected by eliminating all their opponents including top seed Muazzam/Arif in the semi finals to meet with their school’s top pair, Ryan/Jie Quan in the final.

Aaron/Jie Yang Boys U12 Runners Up
Enroute to final, Ryan/Jie Quan also upset the second seeded pair of Amirul Arazi/M Jazlan. The all Ladang Harcroft final gave big smiles to everyone in the school camp. The cheers did not stop here because over in the U12 girls category, the doubles final were again another all Ladang Harcroft affair. The icing on the cake was that we have also clinged the girls U12 singles title.

In the closing of day, we were in a daze of having SRKC Ladang Harcroft swept all 3 titles, Girls singles, Girls Doubles and Boys Doubles. Both doubles runner-ups pairs were also Ladang Harcroft’s. This has been the best MSSD badminton performance the school has ever produced and we were all very proud to have contributed to this success. The boys and girls were finally treated with Mc Donald’s for lunch by the school stewards and I’m sure the celebration euphoria will certainly linger a little longer in the coming weeks at school – and deservingly so.  

BOYS U12 SINGLES
Round 1  Aaron LH       vs       Bye
Round 2 Aaron LH        vs       Darren Tan LGH           13 - 30

BOYS U12 DOUBLES
Round 1  Aaron/Jie Yang LH       vs       Dhirran/Vignesh LM                                   30 – 6
Round 2  Aaron/Jie Yang LH       vs       Zairi/Mohd Faiz PBP1                                30 – 17
Round 3  Aaron/Jie Yang LH       vs       Ryan Chang/Wong Ting Xuan SRD B2         30 – 24
Round 4  Aaron/Jie Yang LH       vs       Visnu Girioran/See Pei Shen Help               30 – 18
Quarter Final  Aaron/Jie Yang LH       vs       Siow Zi Feng/Choong Jing Liang SRD B1  30 – 24
Semi Final      Aaron/Jie Yang LH       vs       Muazzam/Arif Zafry SBG                 21 – 7, 21 - 13
Final              Aaron/Jie Yang LH        vs       Ryan/Jie Quan LH                          13 -21, 14 – 21

Round 1  Ryan/Jie Quan LH        vs       Bye
Round 2  Ryan/Jie Quan LH        vs       Tan Jun Hoe/Cheong Chien Shen CW          30 – 17
Round 3  Ryan/Jie Quan LH        vs       Andrew Lau/Sie Yie Yu SRD B1                  30 – 12
Round 4  Ryan/Jie Quan LH        vs       Kevin Lim/Eugene Phang Sri KL                  30 – 7
Quarter Final  Ryan/Jie Quan LH        vs       Darren Tan/Brandon Ang LGH              30 – 9
Semi Final      Ryan/Jie Quan LH        vs       Amirul Arazi/M Jazlan SBGB          21 – 9, 21 - 12   
Final              Ryan/Jie Quan LH         vs       Aaron/Jie Yang LH                         21 – 13, 21 - 14

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

In a Limbo

We have been reflecting upon an earlier change of events that had profound impact on all 13 Putrajaya players who could not obtain their ID from BAM including Ryan and Aaron. Despite all efforts from the state secretariat to appeal and seek fellow members from KLBA & SBA to support us, BAM was steadfast with this simple rule – unless the players are schooling in Putrajaya, they cannot represent Putrajaya state which was enforced strictly beginning of this year. Both Ryan & Aaron are now schooling in Puchong under the state of Selangor which is in conflict with this new ruling. My wife even contacted her former NS coach and the current BAM Honorary Secretary, Mr Ng Chin Chai but there is nothing he can do to bend this rule.

With this decision, many players suddenly found themselves in a limbo as all hopes to play in the BAM sanctioned tournaments like the national junior circuit were torn to shreds. The coaches and parents were counting for any last lingering hope from BAM to make some exceptions in the name of developing grass root talents in search for another Lee Chong Wei - or so we thought, as these were merely rhetorics.

So what does this mean to the players whom had trained so purposefully all year with the single aim to become a state player, only to be denied this opportunity at the eleventh hour? Some were devastated. Many despaired and looked lost. Some withdrew from the Persatuan to seek new paths elsewhere. Only one shifted school to Putrajaya and eventually got his ID from BAM. The rest just reverted back to studies and resort to play in private tournaments.

Persatuan Badminton Putrajaya was very sympathetic and still supported the players who do not have ID like their own state player while their parents sort out the player’s schooling dilemma. The problem is many of the player’s education were already entrenched in the vernacular syllabus and moving to a non-vernacular school in Putrajaya is unthinkable. Therefore, in time to come, we have to ask the hard questions. Should we continue to train in Putrajaya? For how long? Now that the 1st leg of the National Junior Circuit 2014 has completed and reality has already sunk in, our boys will definitely miss the boat this year. Beyond this point, I don’t know if the boys will ever get an ID.

So where does that lead the boys from here? The path looks bleak. The only flicker of light at the end of the tunnel will be the school organized MSSD tournaments. It may well provide us with some answers although it is a long shot to get into Selangor BA. We will just have to see through the MSSD next week and hope for the best! 

Sunday, 30 March 2014

ARA GOLDEN EAGLE BADMINTON CLUB KL JR BADMINTON TOURNAMENT 2014

This club based in Selayang, KL is managed by the former chief coach and council member of KLBA. The organizers did not restrict state players from participating. Therefore we were rather apprehensive coming here. Sure enough when we received the draw, Aaron was crest fallen.

For boys U12 singles, his draw couldn’t be any more hazardous when he was drawn to meet 3 high profile players in the first 3 rounds ie. Muazzam Danish, Jimmy Wong & Wah Jia Wei. As anticipated, he could not get past the Selangor state player Muazzam Danish who was in devastating form here. He steam rolled his way to become champion. This is the second time Aaron has lost to him. Ryan also couldn’t get past the first round - losing to the eventual runners-up, M Shaarveen.

The boys were left with the doubles to salvage whatever pride was left in them. Although they had an easy passage in the second round, but they eventually fell in the quarter final in straight sets. Aaron in this tournament made many uncharacteristic errors. I was unsure if he was unaccustomed to the court lightings or probably due to a reverse backlash from last week euphoric final in Cheras. Here, he seemed lost. Even Ryan who was suffering from stomach virus all week had a decent game.

It was indeed a tournament to be forgotten and to be put behind us. Like it or not, the boys were only left with a little more than a week before the MSSD 2014 tournament takes off. Aaron’s dip in form is quite worrying and we will have to work hard to get his confidence back – in time!

Boys Singles U12
Aaron Wong       vs            Muazzam Danish              14 – 30
Ryan Wong         vs            M Shaarveen                    15 – 30

Boys Doubles U12
1st Round          Ryan/Aaron       vs         Bye
2nd Round         Ryan/Aaron       vs         Low Eng Seng/See Yu Rong      30 – 12

Quarter Final     Ryan/Aaron       vs         Edmund Onn/Lee Kai Wan         14 – 21, 12 - 21

Saturday, 29 March 2014

TRIVIA Part 1

Q : Which was your most memorable tournament?
R : Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort Jr Tournament 2013 – Champion!
A : 14th Inter MBA 2013 – Champion!

Q : Your most disappointing tournament?
R : Perak Chinese BA 2013 – lost 1st round badly to Too Ming Yap.
A : Hooi Yee Sports 2012 – Gave walk over after vomited because of stomach virus.

Q : Worst tournament organized?
R : 14th Inter MBA 2013!
A : HKC Sports 2013!

Q : The coach that made my game improved noticeably?
R : Coach Kent (NEBA)
A : Coach Alex (MBA)

Q : Most memorable win against?
R : Tan Ming Yue (FZ Forza 2013)
A : Wong Vin Sean (Piala Merdeka PBVKL, PBWKL 2013)

Q : The opponent I admire most?
R : Lim Ming Hong (Penang)
A : Daryl Foo (Selangor)

Q : My favorite racquet?
R : KX All England 100
A : Yonex Arc Saber 009DX

Q : My favorite shoe?
R : Asics
A : Asics

Q : My badminton Idol?
R : Lee Chong Wei
A : Lee Chong Wei

Q : Best court I have played?
R : Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort
A : 89 Arena, Klang

Q : My preferred doubles partner?
R : Aaron Wong
A : Darren Tan

Q : Most bizarre incident?
R :  A junior player name Taufik Hidayat.
A : 5 racquet strings snapped in a week! Followed by another 2 racquets two weeks later!

Sunday, 23 March 2014

KEJOHANAN BADMINTON PBWKL, PBVKL “PIALA PUSINGAN WPKL 2014”

Aaron (centre) receives RM50, medal & cert for Boys U12 Singles Runners-Up.
His club mates, Jie Yang (L) & Darren (R) made it to the semis for Boys U12 Doubles.
I had an uneasy feeling about this tourney because based on last year’s experience, the quality of this tournament left much to be desired. It was originally scheduled on 15 & 16 Feb 2014 but was later postponed to 22 & 23 Mar. These were tell-tale signs that insufficient thought process was put into it.

When the draw was published in www.sportscentral.com.my in the evening on 21st Mar, my worst fears came true. It was a sketchy hand-written draw without match number and time. I had to call twice to clarify the confusion as I belief many parents/coaches would have done the same.

The person behind the phone number verbally informed that U10 & U12 will start at 9am and finished by noon, followed by U14 in the afternoon and U16 to be played in the evening. The intention was to complete all U10 & U12 in the morning so as we do not have to wait the whole day. This was far from the truth.

Because there was no match number and time, we had to be jailed in the stadium to listen to the announcer to bark out names of players all the time. Secondly, the majestic Stadium Badminton Cheras had 10 courts but was not fully used at any one time. There were insufficient empires let alone schooling kids taking the high chair without linesmen and worst of all, with only one playing shuttle.

To cut the long tale short, we had to wait until 6pm before all U10 & U12 completed their singles (up to last 16) & doubles matches (up to quarter final). At the end of the day, the boys and I were mentally drained. This agitation was aggravating when Ryan had to bow out in both singles & doubles in the first round. What was agonisingly disappointing in the singles was that Ryan had beaten his opponent just a week ago in a friendly match. In the doubles, both brothers also went down uncharacteristically to the SJK(C) Puay Chai No.1 doubles who eventually took the boys U12 doubles title.

Only Aaron was left to battle alone in the boys U12 singles which lifted our otherwise insipid weekend by making a fine run up to the finals before bowing out.

In the end, although the organisers tried hard to make up for their blunder on the second day,  only Aaron gave us something to cheer about  and lifted our dampened spirits.  Otherwise, this will surely go down as one of the most poorly organised public tournament we have participated in.

BOYS SINGLES U12
1st Round – Aaron vs  Bye
2nd Round – Aaron vs Wong Jia Lee          30 – 4
3rd Round – Aaron vs Ng Ee Hern              30 – 16
4th Round – Aaron vs Jason Cheng            30 – 21
Qtr Final – Aaron vs Mohd Haris Sufian      30 – 21
Semi-Final – Aaron vs Chew Chen Hong    21 – 15, 16 – 21, 21 – 19
Final – Aaron vs Tan Jia Jie                      17 – 21, 15 - 21

1st Round – Ryan vs Hadrian Soh               28 – 30

BOYS DOUBLES U12

1st Round – Ryan/Aaron vs Tan Shau Heng/Daryl Foo      23 – 30

The brothers before their doubles match.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

KEJOHANAN BADMINTON KANAK-KANAK BAWAH 12 TAHUN PERSEORANGAN LELAKI ANJURAN PRIMA BADMINTON CENTRE

Wira Tangkis Clean Sweep. L to R : Darren, Aaron, Jie Quan & Jie Yang


This is the first tournament for the boys in 2014 organised by PBC a new court in Puchong Prima/Permai. There were only about 20 participants in this inaugural tournament with 5 entries from Wira Tangkis. Both Ryan and Aaron unfortunately were drawn in the more difficult half with their club mate and favorite Lee Jie Quan.

Ryan won his first and second match effortlessly by winning 31-8 and 31-19 respectively. In the quarter finals, he faced his school and clubmate Lee Jie Quan. For the record, Ryan has never beaten him before and their head-to-head record stands 0 - 4 in favour of Jie Quan. Into the first half of the match, Ryan surprisingly lead Jie Quan until the change over. After that, Jie Quan upped his game and forced Ryan to commit a string of errors. Ryan ran out of ideas in the closing of the game and conceded the match 20 -31.

Aaron received a  bye in his first round. In his second match, Aaron exuded confidence and was in his smashing mood disposing Muhd Thaqif 31-17. In the quarter final, he was drawn against local favorite and top seed Azroy.  Aaron was in form and upset him 31 – 17.  After that game, he felt uncomfortable with his right knee. In the semi final against Lee Jie Quan, he was not at his best and succumb to Jie Quan’s power game 23 – 31. Jie Quan went on to beat Darren Tan in the final.

Wira Tangkis made a clean sweep of all top four prizes. With Jie Quan as Champion, Darren Tan as runner-up, Jie Yang & Aaron grabbing the remaining 3/4 prizes. It was a good start for the club and for Aaron. We hope Ryan will have better luck on the draw in the next tournament in March. Stay tuned.

RESULTS BOYS SINGLES U12

1st Round : Aaron vs Bye              

2nd Round : Aaron vs Muhd Thaqif            31 – 14

Quarter-Final : Aaron vs Azroy                   31 – 17

Semi-final       : Aaron vs Lee Jie Quan      23 – 31

 

1st Round : Ryan vs Wong Wei Sheng       31 – 8

2nd Round : Ryan vs Muhd Iskandar          31 – 19

Quarter-Final : Ryan vs Lee Jie Quan        20 – 31