Choong Hann clarifies Joo Ven issue

IT'S all fair and square as far as the selection process for the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals is concerned.

BA of Malaysia (BAM) coaching director Wong Choong Hann, yesterday reiterated that no one was left out on purpose, and decisions were made professionally.

Choong Hann made the comments after professional shuttler Soong Joo Ven cried foul for not being selected for the Thomas Cup training camp that started last week.

Choong Hann said: "I really don't want to comment so much on this because everyone wants to make a living. Nobody is out there to ruin another person's rice bowl.

"However, when you come out and cry foul, I have no choice but to clarify.

"Joo Ven must realise that he cannot justify his need to have a place in the team just from reaching the semi-finals of one event (Korea Masters).

"When he was a BAM player, we gave him the opportunity to prove himself, but he didn't.

"Now, as a professional, you cry foul, but I have a long-term plan. These players are at least five years younger than Joo Ven. Of course, we would go with them because we have a duty to develop players.

"Furthermore, players like Leong Jun Hao and Aidil Sholeh (Ali Sadikin) have proven themselves in team events.

"I want to make it clear that we are not biased. We conduct everything professionally.

"One good example is Goh Jin Wei. I had explained to Jin Wei why we did not consider her for the upcoming Badminton Asia Championships (BAC) in Manila, but we still roped her in for the Uber Cup.

"I really don't want to make anybody look bad, but this is how it is."

Earlier, Joo Ven, the country's fourth highest-ranked shuttler at No 55 in the world, questioned the national body for not holding a trial for the Thomas Cup.

The Kuala Lumpur Racquet Club (KLRC) shuttler believes he should have been selected considering that he is ranked higher than Aidil, Jun Hao, Ong Ken Yon and Shaqeem Eiman Shahyar, who are part of the centralised training camp.

The other three men's singles in the squad are world No 7 Lee Zii Jia, Liew Daren (No 35) and Ng Tze Yong (No 44).

Meanwhile, women's singles Jin Wei, Siti Nurshuhaini Azman and Myisha Khairul have joined centralised training but are in their bubble as a precaution in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"They have just come back from tournaments overseas, and we have our own five-day quarantine just to be safe. They will join the rest after completing it," Choong Hann added.

Malaysia are in Group D with 2014 champions Japan, England and New Zealand for the Thomas Cup in Bangkok next month (May 8-15), while the Uber Cup team are in Group C with Thailand, Denmark and Egypt.

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