'Egos' force Rexy to make tough calls, names three new pairs

KUALA LUMPUR: Academy Badminton Malaysia (ABM) doubles coaching director Rexy Mainaky admitted that his players' egos do sometimes get in the way, leaving him no choice but to make tough but necessary decisions.

Following the inevitable split of former top-10 pair Goh Sze Fei and Nur Izzuddin Rumsani last week, the Indonesian announced three new men's doubles combinations today.

Sze Fei will now partner Choong Hon Jian, and Izzuddin, who claimed to have lost heart playing with his previous partner, will play with Haikal Nazri.

Haikal's former partner, Wan Arif Wan Junaidi, has been paired with Yap Roy King.

"Let's be very clear about one thing, nobody wanted to split the pairs up," Rexy told the press today. "However, the issue between Sze Fei-Izzuddin was already brought to my attention last year (Tokyo). I tried to save the partnership, but it was futile.

"Yes, players' egos do get in the way, but we have to move forward. I want the other players to understand that it was not merely the coach's decision to split them up."

While it is close to impossible for any of these new pairings to qualify for next year's Paris Olympics, Rexy wants to see them compete among themselves and earn their place in events such as the Sudirman Cup, Asian Games, and Sea Games, as well as the World Championships this year.

"Perhaps there may be a silver lining. We might have lost one top-10 pair, but there may be more in the future with these new combinations.

"I want them to fight it out among themselves.

"We have registered them for four tournaments next month (Thailand International Challenge, Super 100 China Masters, Vietnam IC and Osaka IC), let's see how well they perform," said Rexy.

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