Tuesday November 22, 2005 Academy to host badminton talent search By Y.P. SIVAM THE Badminton Association of Malaysia's (BAM's) search for champions continues with the National Sports Council (NSC) Cari Champions badminton programme at the Michael Badminton Academy (MBA) in Bandar Puteri Puchong on Saturday. BAM general manager Ganga Rao said the association was happy to be part of the programme, initiated by the Ministry of Sports, to unearth new talents. “The programme is an initiative that goes to new areas where BAM normally does not reach. In the past, most of our young talents were identified from junior competitions. However, this Cari Champions programme will be an opportunity to see enthusiastic parents and children being introduced to formal training,” said Ganga at the launch of the programme recently. The full-day programme, which starts at 9am, will involve participants, aged below 12, being tested by a group of coaches. They will have to undergo group warming up, mobility activities, skill training, movement skill and footwork. The programme is supported by Milo and MBA. MBA managing director Michael Lee said the Academy was pleased to offer its premises for the initiative. Saadon (second from right) and Ganga (second from left) receiving the sponsorship from Nestle Sports marketing manager Ng Ping Loong (left) and Lee. “The programme provides an opportunity for young children to interact and enjoy a badminton clinic. We would be glad to continue being part of the programme,” said Lee. NSC Talent Identification Programme head Saadon Shukor said they were laying the foundation at the grassroots for future champions. “There is no short-cut to success. It is most encouraging to note the good response from children and parents to our previous Cari Champions programme. Our aim is also to promote a sport culture among Malaysians,” said Saadon. The Cari Champions badminton programme in Puchong is the second in the series, the firsthaving been held in Wangsa Maju in September. The young talents who are identified will be involved in a coaching programme. Ganga said they were looking into organising similar programmes in other states, too.