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  1. #1
    Regular Member AlanY's Avatar
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    Default Jenny Wallwork is retiring at 26

    Jenny Wallwork of England posted in twitter earlier

    https://twitter.com/Jennywallwork

    No voice, no choice!

    It is with regret that at the age of 26 and entering the prime of my career I feel the necessity to submit my resignation from the GB Badminton Programme.

    As the most successful female player with 42 Caps and the highest World Ranked player over the last 4 years I feel I have no voice or direction in the way my career is going and find myself in an impossible situation other than to remove myself from the World Class Performance Programme.

    It is an athletes’ career and not the Performance Directors and an athlete should have a say in its direction. Having spoken to a number of our most successful players over recent years it is clear that they have been strong minded, highly motivated and independent individuals prepared to take ownership of their own development.
    It will certainly not be a tick box exercise and an on going chase to secure funding that will determine success.

    I know my dreams and aspirations were achievable as my results and achievements so far will testify but in my attempt to move forward in my development my views have been discounted. "Continue with the programme given to you or submit your resignation" was an ultimatum recently given to me.
    I feel this indicates insecure, untrusting and incapable leadership and I am not prepared to be dictated to and therefore feel I am unable to continue with a programme in which I have no confidence. An unhappy player in the training environment has little or no chance of success. This sounds somewhat similar to Imogen's situation several months ago.

    I am clearly not the first to resign and under the current regime I suspect will not be the last.
    I am also aware that when the system is challenged there can only be one outcome, nevertheless feel it important to make a stance for what I believe in and to express my views and concerns for the future of the game in this country.

    I should mention that I will always be most grateful to my personal Coaches Julian Robertson and Andy Wood and the excellent EIS support staff in whom I have benefitted greatly over my eight years at the National Badminton Centre. Thank you to the physiotherapists who got me back to full fitness following my first serious injury so I was able to compete at last weeks European Team Championships.

    I wish all my fellow players, friends and colleagues every success for the future but it is now time for me to look back with pride at my accomplishments and to move on.


    Jennifer Wallwork
    25th February, 2013.
    Last edited by AlanY; 02-25-2013 at 07:12 AM.

  2. #2
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    First Imogen Bankier, now Jenny Wallwork. To misquote Oscar Wilde, "To lose one world class player may be regarded as a misfortune, to lose two looks like carelessness". Both players seem to be blaming the programme and the way it is being implemented for their decision.

    No doubt the authorities will cite the need to make difficult choices and management decisions to build towards Rio and help protect precious funding. There are at least two sides to every story but on the surface it does seem that the current regime is severely alienating some top players.

  3. #3
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    They should consider listening to the players. They don't get paid much afterall... if England wants them to stay, need to talk it through and not shove the programme into their faces
    Last edited by Heong; 02-25-2013 at 07:48 AM.

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but this sounds like she won't retire from the sport but continue to play as an independent player.

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    Regular Member demolidor's Avatar
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    Maybe they made her run an extra lap !?!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by phili View Post
    Correct me if I'm wrong but this sounds like she won't retire from the sport but continue to play as an independent player.
    Don't see many England players trying to make it as an independent player. Perhaps she'll try going to Wales or Scotland and representing them.

  7. #7
    Regular Member diverdan's Avatar
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    This is a real shame. What is going wrong with the system?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheung View Post
    Don't see many England players trying to make it as an independent player. Perhaps she'll try going to Wales or Scotland and representing them.
    Seriously? Unlikely as she's born in northern england and bred in yorkshire as is her father, residency is over 3 years to qualify anyway.

    Seems sad, although there are young players who aim towards being awarded a full time place at MK many promising young players are quitting due to badminton england decisions rightly or wrongly. Mainly from the northern countys aswell.

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    Wales and Scotland have let other persons play under their banner. It's not uncommon. There are even exWorld Champions for Indonesia representing the USA before having gained citizenship...

    So a situation like that would not be unique.

    On a wider perspective, team GB really haven't had the results they should be getting. So the knock on effect is less funding money and even more pressure to get results.
    Last edited by Cheung; 02-25-2013 at 10:48 PM.

  10. #10
    Regular Member ChubbyCheshire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phili View Post
    Correct me if I'm wrong but this sounds like she won't retire from the sport but continue to play as an independent player.
    Difficult for a doubles player, although Robert Blair continues to play Mens Doubles with non fellow countrymen.

  11. #11
    Regular Member ChubbyCheshire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheung View Post
    Don't see many England players trying to make it as an independent player.
    Andrew Smith is probably best example at the moment and he is currently ranked second in England

  12. #12
    Regular Member ChubbyCheshire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheung View Post
    Wales and Scotland have let other persons play under their banner. It's not uncommon. There are even exWorld Champions for Indonesia representing the USA before having gained citizenship...
    But Jenny cannot become a citizen of Wales or Scotland as they all come under UK citizenship. I believe you can only switch allegiances within the UK if there is some ancestory from that country.

  13. #13
    Regular Member ChubbyCheshire's Avatar
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    I suspect BE will bend over backwards to bring her back into the fold and I hope the issues can be resolved. But judging by the comments on her Facebook page from other aggrieved players, BE may have to do some serious inward looking to resolve some of the issues

  14. #14
    Regular Member craigandy's Avatar
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    If they participate in the national/uk set up then I think they should adhere to their way. The management should have a greater overview and it would be way too complicated to organize everyone if they all had their own agendas/styles on how to train etc.
    If players want it their own way and not dedicate themselves fully then no problem become an independent and do it your way no hard feeling. If you start getting better results and winning etc then I think it would be impossible not to listen. So instead of bad mouthing the set up on random opinion, what I would do is go out and proof it on the court. After that everyone will be able to take you seriously and you can change the set up yourself. Sorted!

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    Regular Member ChubbyCheshire's Avatar
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    Trouble is we don't know what she is objecting too - but the fact that Bankier left for similar reasons is concerning. It would appear from the FB comments that Jens Grills is coming into some criticism - but also the hierarchy is being criticised suggesting this is not a new problem and merely a resistance to change.

    I suspect further negotiations will take place and it will get brushed under the carpet and we'll never find out what really happened.

  16. #16
    Regular Member craigandy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phili View Post
    Correct me if I'm wrong but this sounds like she won't retire from the sport but continue to play as an independent player.
    Don't think so. her quote "You can play the local tournaments but ultimately Badminton England are the association that enter you into the big tournaments."

    She reckons she can't become independent lol

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by craigandy View Post
    Don't think so. her quote "You can play the local tournaments but ultimately Badminton England are the association that enter you into the big tournaments."

    She reckons she can't become independent lol
    It is true in a sense. The Association is the one who endorse & sends the entries. They can ban a player if they want, happened before with Msia's Tan Chun Seang. So, if a player is not in the good books of Badminton England, they can make life difficult if the player goes independent.

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