Singapore Badminton Scene

Discussion in 'Professional Players' started by Loh, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. Cheung

    Cheung Moderator

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    @Loh

    I have moved your recent posts that focus solely on LKY to the LKY thread.

    Please put such posts there.

    This thread would be better for other players infrequent updates and the Singapore badminton scene.
     
  2. Cheung

    Cheung Moderator

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    I remember you proposed a plan for BAM to attract overseas players to represent Malaysia.
     
  3. Yeung Chao

    Yeung Chao Regular Member

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    Yes, for women singles and women's doubles. They are really not up to scratch and hardly quarterfinalist material.

    I am not surprised if Singapore produce a few more women doubles and mixed players, Malaysia is going to lose to Singapore if they face each other in Sudirman Cup/Commonwealth Games.
     
  4. Cheung

    Cheung Moderator

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    I got ignored so deleted a few posts for spamming.

    Mod
     
  5. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Commentary: Loh Kean Yew’s smashing World Championships win is no fluke
    Loh Kean Yew’s unique expeditions post-national service might have made the sum difference in him getting to the top of the badminton world, says Jan Lin Lee.

    [​IMG]
    Singapore's Loh Kean Yew reacts after defeating India's Kidambi Srikanth during their Men's badminton singles final match at the BWF World Championships in Huelva, Spain, on Dec 19, 2021. (Photo: AP/Manu Fernandez)

    [​IMG]
    Jan Lin Lee
    21 Dec 2021 06:04AM(Updated: 21 Dec 2021 06:04AM)
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    SAN FRANCISCO, California: The speed, the precision, the badminton IQ. Those watching Loh Kean Yew at the 2021 BWF World Championships in Spain have witnessed one of the biggest sporting moments in badminton history.

    The 24-year-old has smashed his way to a historic victory, defeating several top seeded players methodically, one mad match at a time.

    This fairy tale run rounds up nearly 20 years since a Singaporean male shuttler stood on the podium of a badminton world championship.

    When then 18-year-old Kendrick Lee lost to China’s Chen Jin in the final of the 2002 World Junior boys’ singles final to win Singapore’s first ever silver medal at a badminton major event, anticipation was high in the local badminton fraternity of an exciting future.

    Even as it did take a while for our youth to become truly competitive beyond the junior stage.

    Indeed, badminton big guns like Chen Jin, Chen Long, Viktor Axelsen, and Kento Momota were all World Junior Champions before winning the men’s edition later on. Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei were bronze medallists in their World Juniors’ event before breaking away from the pack.

    In fact, 2002 was historic for Singapore men’s badminton also because Hendra Wijaya, who had relocated to Singapore from Indonesia in 2000, also bagged a bronze medal in the boys’ singles event alongside Lee. Hendra later teamed up with his brother Hendri to forge a men’s doubles partnership winning medals at SEA Games and Commonwealth Games.

    [​IMG]
    Badminton player Loh Kean Yew (centre) and table tennis player Yu Mengyu (second from right) as flag bearers for Singapore at the Tokyo Olympic Games. (Photo: SNOC)

    2002 was also the year when Ronald Susilo – Singapore’s biggest badminton household name in the last two decades – donned Singapore national colours for the first time on the big stage nine years after arriving in Singapore to study at ACS (Independent) at 14.

    FOCUSING ON GROOMING TALENT AT A YOUNG AGE BETTER STRATEGY
    Loh’s victory unlocks an interesting pathway of success for Singapore badminton in the coveted men’s singles event and suggests the Singapore Badminton Association’s pivot from the Foreign Talent Scheme towards youth development since 2014 is paying off.

    Susilo, who achieved a career high ranking of world number six in 2004, had spent his youth honing his craft by playing in Singapore interschool tournaments and local championships, very much like Lee and other local stars who made it through the ranks and Loh is simply next in line.

    Lee retired in 2008 and Susilo followed several years later. Lee never got past the second round at the World’s, while Susilo’s best result was a quarter final finish at the 2007 edition, which was also the last time he competed in the event.
     
    #1825 Loh, Dec 22, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2021
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  6. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Now, Loh was 13 when he arrived in Singapore from Penang in 2010 after receiving a scholarship from the Singapore Sports School to study and train as a student-athlete.

    Like many promising Malaysian shuttlers, he was also offered a spot at the Bukit Jalil Sports School in Kuala Lumpur that has groomed numerous world class athletes for the nation.

    In an unlikely move encouraged by the family of fellow Penangite-turned-Singaporean shuttler Terry Hee, his parents seized the opportunity for their son to be relocated across the Causeway to join older brother, Kean Hean, who had arrived a year earlier to study at Montfort Secondary School, known for having a steep local badminton tradition and success.

    Kean Hean had taken the conventional local path to promptly continue his post-secondary education at Republic Polytechnic before enlisting in national service (NS) in 2017. But Loh Kean Yew took the less beaten local path by dropping out of his Republic Polytechnic diploma studies to enlist in NS in 2016 and was operationally ready (ORD) in 2018.

    SQUARING AWAY NATIONAL SERVICE
    Kean Yew is certainly not the first promising national shuttler to defer his post-secondary education in order to first complete NS at the prime of his youth in having a shot at succeeding as a full-time badminton player.

    Derek Wong, made the same move in a bid for professional sporting success after completing his O-levels at Montfort Secondary School. At 20, after his ORD in 2009, Wong quickly became the face of men’s badminton in Singapore until his last major tournament at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

    Wong’s retirement left a painfully empty void in the men’s singles event for Singapore, where the nation was unrepresented in men’s singles at the World Championships in 2017 and 2018, until Loh took over the baton in 2019. He was knocked out in the third round in his first outing.

    While Wong neither scaled high on the world rankings, he did bag a historic men’s singles silver medal for Singapore at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

    Derek’s father, local badminton legend Wong Shoon Keat, did question on hindsight if the move proved more detrimental to his son’s sporting development and career, saying if his son had deferred NS and continued studying, the outcome may have been different.

    Loh too candidly shared on social media that while he enjoyed NS, the two years in service did affect his badminton career.

    What made a difference was a remarkable “plot twist” immediately after his ORD when he was 21.

    NON-STOP ACTION SINCE ORD-ING
    Just weeks after completing his NS in 2018, determined to make up for “lost time”, he signed with Langhoj Badminton Club of the Danish Badminton League based out of the small Danish city of Struer for three months.

    The Danish badminton league and club system is touted as the “secret sauce” behind Denmark’s smashing success in the world of badminton despite being a small country of just 5.8 million. It is a rare and unprecedented opportunity for Singaporean shuttlers to compete in their league. And it paid off.

    In his three months based in Denmark, Loh maximised his time in Europe travelling to Germany and Scotland where he dove right back into international tournaments, as rusty as he was.

    While he had no titles to shout about in that fresh-out-of-ORD period playing in Europe, it was nevertheless an experience that had thrown him into the deep end where he had to learn how to swim, or rather, play badminton and survive in an utterly foreign environment on his own.

    The 21-year-old returned to Asia profoundly shaped by that experience. In January 2019, Loh arrived in Thailand where he officially made his first firm mark in the world of badminton. At the 2019 Thailand Masters, a BWF World Tour Super 300 event with a total prize money of US$150,000, the unheralded Loh played through qualifiers to reach the men’s singles final.

    He shocked top seed and the once indomitable Lin Dan in two straight games to claim his maiden BWF World Tour title.

    [​IMG]
    Singapore's Loh Kean Yew returns a shot to India's Kidambi Srikanth during their Men's badminton singles final match at the BWF World Championships in Huelva, Spain, on Dec 19, 2021. (Photo: AP/Manu Fernandez)

    Loh would also end 2019 on a high by winning the silver medal at the SEA Games in the men’s singles event losing to Malaysia’s Lee Zii Jia in the final. The Commonwealth Games and SEA Games in 2022 could cement the birth of a “badminton causeway derby” between these two men’s singles hotshots.

    Before 2019, the last time a Singaporean made the SEA Games men’s singles final was in 2007 when Kendrick Lee took home the silver medal. That win itself was a rare major feat 24 years after Wong Shoon Keat won Singapore’s first and only SEA Games men’s singles gold medal.

    FROM OUT OF HIS LEAGUE TO OUT OF HIS COMFORT ZONE
    But COVID-19 put the whole world on a standstill last year. As it persisted into 2021, the newly crowned Tokyo 2020 Olympic champion Viktor Axelsen handed Kean Yew an unmissable opportunity to join him and a few other shuttlers in a unique month-long training camp organised by the 27-year-old Dane in Dubai.

    This once unthinkable move orchestrated by Axelsen speaks of the emergence of a new, highly globalised generation of shuttlers breaking down national borders even – or especially – in a time of COVID-19.

    Loh may have felt out of his league when he landed the sparring opportunity with the Danish Olympic and World Champion but he has a charismatic confidence that threaded the needle, allowing the development of a unique friendship of mutual respect with Axelsen.

    India’s young star Lakshya Sen, who won the bronze medal at his maiden World Championships outing, was also part of the small group handpicked by Axelsen to spar with him in Dubai. Yet beyond the technical benefits of training with Axelsen, it is a morale booster like no other just to be fully regarded and acknowledged as a peer by an Olympic and World Champion.

    In a sense, one could say Loh was in the right place at the right time. But this Singaporean shuttler’s ascension to the top of elite badminton cannot be put down to just one thing. It is a unique, mixed bag of factors that have simply converged in his favour.

    The 13-year-old boy who arrived in Singapore and cried because he was homesick has transformed into a young man fuelled by an audacious sporting mission. That he was unafraid to take risks and seize opportunities – no matter how unconventional, remote, or uncomfortable they were – made a difference in turning what was once just a dream into reality today.


    A film producer based in California, Jan is a former school badminton player and has fond memories working on the professional badminton circuit and for the Olympics as a media professional.
     
    #1826 Loh, Dec 22, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2021
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  7. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    A 10-year dream: Former teammate, coach recount Loh Kean Yew’s determination to become world’s best

    [​IMG]Raj Nadarajan/TODAY

    Badminton world champion Loh Kean Yew kissing the Singapore flag on his attire.
    • Badminton world champion Loh Kean Yew already had his sights set on winning the championships 10 years ago
    • His former teammate at Singapore Sports School recounted how Loh stayed focused on achieving his dream
    • Loh said that he did not expect to win the world championships so soon
    • A former coach said that even during his National Service, Loh would train in his own time
    [​IMG]
    BY
    NAVENE ELANGOVAN
    [​IMG]
    BY
    JUSTIN ONG
    @JustinOngTODAY
    Published December 22, 2021
    Updated December 22, 2021

    SINGAPORE — Watching national shuttler Loh Kean Yew at the badminton world championships over the weekend, a former teammate of the national player was in disbelief when the shuttlecock landed and confirmed the gold-medal win.

    Mr Tan Ming Shun, 25, who was in the same programme as Loh at the Singapore Sports School and a former national shuttler, recalled how the youthful player told him 10 years ago that he wanted to achieve the feat of winning the world championships.

    At that time, Loh was just 14 or 15 years old, Mr Tan told TODAY on Tuesday (Dec 21). He was Loh's senior by a year in school.

    “He mentioned that he wanted to be one of the world’s top players one day and, hopefully, be able to win the Olympics and world championships as well,” Mr Tan said.

    It took 10 years, but the dream became a reality on Sunday when Loh beat India’s Srikanth Kidambi 21-15, 22-20 in the Badminton World Federation's World Championships men’s singles final in Huelva, Spain.

    The win made Loh the first Singaporean to win the title and saw his world ranking bumped up from 22 to 10 on Tuesday.

    READ ALSO
    'A long way to go' despite world champion crown, says Loh Kean Yew


    Speaking to reporters after landing at Changi Airport on Tuesday, the 24-year-old said that although it has been his goal to be the world’s best all along, he had not expected to achieve this feat so soon.

    “I didn’t think about whether it was within reach. I just kept focusing on the game and how to play.”

    He added that he was “quite satisfied and happy” with his achievements so far, noting that he has had a good run — having beaten the top-four-ranked men’s badminton players in tournaments over the past few months.

    Loh gave special thanks to his coach Kelvin Ho for his guidance in the last few years.

    “Without him, I wouldn’t have won this medal for sure.”


    [​IMG]Raj Nadarajan/TODAY
    Badminton world champion Loh Kean Yew flanked by his physiotherapist Ho Jia Ying (left) and coach Kelvin Ho.

    "That was something very different about him. He dared to dream at a time when the top players were Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei, and (the other athletes) wondered if we would ever reach that stage."

    Mr Tan Ming Shun, who was badminton world champion Loh Kean Yew's senior in the Singapore Sports School

    The win heralds “a new beginning” for him, Loh added.

    “I’ve been the underdog, but now I’m going to be one of those whom people want to beat very badly.”

    Loh told TODAY he hopes that his win will inspire the younger generation of Singaporean badminton players, by showing them that such achievements are possible.

    “But of course, it is also about their mindset, how they pursue the sport and train, and what their goals are.”

    'HE DARED TO DREAM'

    For Mr Tan, now an assistant coach at the Singapore Sports School, his ex-teammate’s win has been “overwhelming”.

    “That was something very different about him. He dared to dream at a time when the top players were Lin Dan (from China) and Lee Chong Wei (from Malaysia), and (the other athletes) wondered if we would ever reach that stage.

    “But he stayed very focused and believed that one day he would do that.”

    READ ALSO
    'He had that spark': Mentor, badminton association on what made Loh Kean Yew a world champ


    Mr Tan said that Loh already had good badminton skills when he attended the Singapore Sports School’s selection trials in 2009.

    “When we first saw him, we were very stunned by his skills… his racket skills, his whole movement on the court was just very different, his skill level was already very good,” he recalled.

    [​IMG]Tan Ming Shun
    Singapore Sports School alumni Loh Kean Yew (left) and Tan Ming Shun (right) in a photo taken in 2011 when the duo were in Scotland for a badminton competition.

    Despite being singled out as someone with ability beyond his years, Loh was never one to keep his talents to himself and often taught others how to improve.

    Mr Tan recounted that after he played at tournaments alongside Loh, his teammate would give him advice on how to improve after each match, something that competitors do not usually do.

    Loh was also not one to boast of his achievements and remained “grounded” through his progress in his younger years, Mr Tan added.

    NATIONAL SERVICE EXPERIENCE

    READ ALSO
    Loh Kean Yew becomes first Singaporean to win World Championship men's singles title


    Ms Jiang Yanmei, technical manager with the Singapore Badminton Association (SBA), was one of Loh’s coaches between 2010 and 2013. She herself was a former national shuttler who played in the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games.
    (Jiang Yanmei came from China and played for Singapore.)

    She told TODAY that Loh was “always very determined” in training.

    His grit and determination to stay at the top of his game was on full display during his National Service (NS) stint between 2016 and 2018, she said.

    By then, he was already under national singles coach Kelvin Ho, but Ms Jiang was still in contact with him.

    Despite Loh having to train full-time as a transport operator in the army, SBA had worked with national sports governing body Sport Singapore and the Ministry of Defence to work out his schedule so that he could continue training and competing to “maintain his standard”, she said.

    “I don’t think it affected his career… he made a choice to enter NS at the right time because he wanted to play in the 2020 Olympics and during the two years (as a serviceman), it also sharpened his character.”

    Agreeing, Mr Tan said that Loh was disciplined in training during his time in the army. For instance, even if there was no court practice, Loh would train in his own time.

    “It’s part of his duty to serve the nation (and) he didn’t really complain,” Mr Tan added.

    At the press conference held at the airport on Tuesday, Loh said that he laughs off online comments about how he is an imported talent.

    Loh came to Singapore from Penang in Malaysia in 2010 at the age of 13 to attend the Singapore Sports School.

    His family still lives in Penang and one of his brothers, Loh Kean Hean, lives in Singapore. Kean Hean, 26, is also a Singapore citizen and national badminton player.

    “On the internet, anyone can say whatever they want and… this will never end,” the new world champion said.

    He added that he will continue to focus on playing badminton and doing what he can to make Singapore proud.
     
    #1827 Loh, Dec 22, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2021
  8. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Badminton: Kelvin Ho, the 'big brother' coach always in Loh Kean Yew's corner

    [​IMG]
    National shuttler Loh Kean Yew (left) and coach Kelvin Ho, at the Tokyo Olympics this year. PHOTO: COURTESY OF KELVIN HO
    [​IMG]

    David Lee

    PUBLISHED
    DEC 22, 2021, 3:21 PM SGT

    SINGAPORE - The pivotal point of Loh Kean Yew's ascent to a world champion came, not during this month's tournament, but in the second round of October's French Open.

    There, in Paris, Loh had pulled off a first-round upset of All England Champion Lee Zii Jia but then lost to Indian Lakshya Sen, a player he had beaten in the Dutch Open final.

    National singles coach Kelvin Ho said: "It was not the first time Kean Yew had let comments on social media or his own expectations get to him.

    "In 2019, he also beat Hong Kong's second seed Angus Ng and then lost in the second round to Japan's Koki Watanabe.

    "I told him his mentality wasn't right - you may think you are there, but you are not there yet. Don't get ahead of yourself and think what the final result should be, and forget about your processes and routines which you should focus on.

    "He could have not listened, but he took it onboard. The next week he won the Hylo Open in Germany, and now he is a world champion."

    By his side in his corner and even sometimes sharing the same bed, the 31-year-old Ho has been ever-present in Loh’s career over the past decade. But their telepathic partnership almost did not happen.

    Ho was a national player himself, but unlike Loh, he was a "super late bloomer" who played volleyball in primary school but disliked it.

    Badminton was a casual dalliance until he was 13 when he made it his co-curricular activity at Ang Mo Kio Secondary School. He received proper coaching for the first time and soon became the school's top singles player and beat combined schools and Singapore Sports School opponents.

    "I enjoyed the feeling of being good at something, of winning and improving. I loved badminton so much, I didn't want to do anything else," Ho told The Straits Times.

    So, like Loh, he quit school at 17 to pursue his passion full-time after being scouted by the Singapore Badminton Association (SBA) and went on to make the bronze-winning 2009 SEA Games team.

    But things quickly fell apart. In 2011, the SBA disbanded its National Team 2, leaving Ho hurt and lost. He said: "I was going to complete National Service then and looking forward to try and continue my playing career and that happened.

    "I was angry and disappointed. I felt I had made sacrifices and was so excited to train harder and go further after NS. I woke up as usual the following day to prepare for 8am training and then realised I'm no longer a national player."

    Ho thought of giving up on badminton but his dislike for books meant that he returned to school as a coach instead. Nine months later, the SBA offered an olive branch in the form of a youth coach position.

    "I was already a coach by then and was more at peace so my mentality also changed from a player to someone who wants to help the team, and I was excited by this opportunity," he said.

    That was when he first encountered a "raw but talented" Loh, when the Sports School the teenager attended had combined sessions with the national youth teams.

    [​IMG]
    Loh Kean Yew (left) and his coach Kelvin Ho at the BWF World Championships, in Huelva, Spain, on Dec 19, 2021. PHOTO: BADMINTONPHOTO

    Ho was gradually promoted to national assistant coach before his current appointment, displaying the same never-say-die attitude as when he persevered through six attempts to pass his basic sports science module to secure his coaching credentials.

    His secondment with the Sports School was beneficial, as he learnt from its badminton academy's former head coach Bai Lihua and general manager Desmond Tan on how to manage a team, plan training programmes, analyse players and monitor their progression.

    [​IMG]
    Loh Kean Yew returned to Singapore with physiotherapist Ho Jia Ying (left) and national singles coach Kelvin Ho (right). ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
     
  9. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Noted.
    It was a little confusing which thread to post to.
     
  10. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Smash hits from the court: 6 business leaders serve up lessons from badminton
    WED, DEC 22, 2021 - 4:14 PM

    UPDATED WED, DEC 22, 2021 - 6:53 PM
    PAIGE LIMpaigelim@sph.com.sg@PaigeLimBT

    The Business Times speaks to 6 Singapore business leaders who are longstanding badminton enthusiasts.
    PHOTOS: PHOBE TAN, JUMBO GROUP, DAVID YANG

    IT remains the talk of the town: National shuttler Loh Kean Yew's stunning win at the 2021 BWF World Championships last Sunday (Dec 19).

    The world No 22 upset India's world No 14 Srikanth Kidambi 21-15, 22-20 in the final in Huelva, Spain, effectively sealing his place in the history books as the first Singaporean to win the World Championships.

    One can only imagine how much more Loh's win will do in boosting badminton's popularity as a sport in Singapore. Badminton court bookings have seen a surge in demand here in recent years, with reports of slots even being listed for sale on the black market.

    But what's behind the enduring appeal of the world's fastest racket sport?

    The Business Times speaks to 6 Singapore business leaders who are longstanding badminton enthusiasts to find out what the sport means to them, and how they've applied lessons learnt from the game to their business:

    Wei Chan, managing director of Pine Garden's Cake

    [​IMG]
    Wei Chan, managing director of Pine Garden’s Cake, was the vice-captain of the school badminton team at Victoria School and Victoria Junior College. PHOTO: PHOBE TAN

    Growing up, Wei Chan recalls spending his time watching the rallies of badminton greats Yang Yang and Rudy Hartono on television, in a bid to study their playing styles.

    The managing director of Pine Garden's Cake was the vice-captain of the school badminton team at Victoria School and Victoria Junior College. While studying at the University of Calgary in Canada, Chan also represented the then Malaysian Singaporean Students' Association in competitions.

    Now in China for work, the 49-year-old plays with the badminton group of the Hong Kong Chamber of Commerce every week.

    For Chan, badminton requires stamina, grit, perseverance and strategy - elements he has applied to the running of his bakery, especially last year when their business took a hit from "circuit-breaker" measures.

    Said Chan: "When you miss a good shot in a game of badminton, what do you do next? As with today's fluid business landscape, how do you claw back when you're down? It's about reacting fast, changing your game plan, and thinking about what other markets and sectors you can start striving for."

    Ang Kiam Meng, executive director and group chief executive officer (CEO) of Jumbo Group

    [​IMG]
    Ang Kiam Meng, executive director and group CEO of Jumbo Group, plays recreational doubles thrice a week. PHOTO: JUMBO GROUP OF RESTAURANTS

    One might be surprised to learn that Ang Kiam Meng only picked up badminton in his mid-40s, especially when most of the peers he plays with have trained competitively since young.

    The 59-year-old used to swim and jog regularly to stay fit. But he decided to give badminton a shot later on, taking on adult lessons at the beginning to learn the sport's techniques.

    Now, playing badminton is more than just another form of exercise for Ang. The executive director and group CEO of seafood restaurant operator Jumbo Group plays thrice a week with different social groups - including 1 comprising CEOs - and has enjoyed expanding his network of contacts on court. On occasion, he even exchanges business-related ideas with other entrepreneurs over a game or 2.

    Playing recreational doubles has reinforced Ang's belief in the value of teamwork - something he has always tried to inculcate in his employees.

    "In badminton, both partners must work together to cover ground. If 1 person makes a mistake, we just need to accept that it happened, move on, and do better," he said.

    "Likewise, when we receive customer complaints in the food and beverage industry, my kitchen staff can blame my service crew; my service crew can blame the kitchen staff. But there's no point in playing the blame game; it's our collective problem and we need to work together as a team to solve it."

    Eugene Ang, managing director of JK Technology

    [​IMG]
    Eugene Ang, managing director of JK Technology, was the vice-president of the Singapore Badminton Association from 2016 to 2018. PHOTO: DAVID YANG

    In the past 30 years, Eugene Ang has competed in more than 20 doubles Masters tournaments in Singapore, which are badminton competitions held for participants aged 40 and above.

    The 60-year-old was the vice-president of the Singapore Badminton Association (SBA) from 2016 to 2018, and has been a sponsor of the annual Singapore Badminton Open since 2006. He also organises the Singapore Swimming Club JK Technology Badminton Inter-Club Master League, an annual tournament which used to see a turnout of 200 players before the pandemic, and took place over a stretch of 6 to 7 months.

    One of Ang's biggest takeaways from badminton is the importance of being resilient and having a fighting spirit, which he applies to his work at JK Technology, an information technology solutions provider.

    "In business, you cannot win every deal. You might lose some battles, but you must plan to win the war. I always tell people that it's okay to lose a few points along the way - what counts is who reaches 21 points first," he said.
     
  11. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Daryl Neo, co-founder and CEO of DC Frontiers

    [​IMG]
    Daryl Neo (left), co-founder and CEO of DC Frontiers, was on the school badminton team from primary school all the way to junior college. PHOTO: HANDSHAKES

    With 12 years of competitive badminton experience behind him, Daryl Neo is perhaps the one to beat on court.

    Back in his youth, he was once training 7 times a week - for the Tampines Junior College school badminton team, an inter-constituency badminton club, and under Sport Singapore's sports excellence programme.

    The 36-year-old continues to play the sport today, organising his own badminton social groups at least twice a week.

    Pointing out the nifty footwork the game requires, Neo - who is the co-founder and CEO of artificial intelligence startup DC Frontiers - said badminton reminds him to never lose focus of his business's core.

    "When Loh Kean Yew plays, you notice that he always goes back to the centre of the court, so he has time to recover before his opponent's next attack," he mused.

    "As a company, we know what kind of product we want to build, though it can be tempting to take on more. Always remember what your business focus is - in other words, the 'centre' of your business - so you don't get pulled in different directions and get caught off-guard."

    Lawrence Leow, executive chairman and CEO of Crescendas Group

    [​IMG]
    Lawrence Leow, executive chairman and CEO of Crescendas Group, has been the president of the Singapore Badminton Association since 2018. PHOTO: SINGAPORE BADMINTON ASSOCIATION

    How Lawrence Leow fell in love with the game of badminton was completely serendipitous.

    In 1975, a then 17-year-old Leow and his coursemates were looking to take up a sport to keep fit. They settled on badminton, found a secluded, run down indoor badminton hall along Portsdown Road managed by Singapore Polytechnic, and soon found themselves rallying for hours there every day.

    The rest, he says, is history. Today, the 63-year-old is the current president of the SBA, a title he has held since 2018. Leow was previously SBA's deputy president from 2014 to 2016 and is presently the executive chairman and CEO of Crescendas Group, which has interests in properties, hotels, building materials, among others.

    Before sustaining a recent injury to the hip, he continued to play the sport recreationally at least 4 times a week at Heartbeat@Bedok or Our Tampines Hub.

    According to Leow, badminton requires "speed, agility, quick thinking and swift responses"; to win the game, one needs "good tactical acumen". In business, these are also principal ingredients for success, he said.

    "In the new economy, speed is everything. It gives a business an edge if it can leverage speed to gain a first-mover advantage over its peers and competitors, whether it's commercialising an innovative idea, or launching a new product or service," he added.

    Dora Hoan, group CEO and co-chairman of Best World International

    [​IMG]
    Dora Hoan, group CEO and co-chairman of Best World International, played competitive doubles during her days at Nanyang University

    Dora Hoan's fondest memories of her childhood revolve around playing badminton with her brother day and night in the backyard of their house. Despite not having received any formal badminton training, she played competitive doubles during her days at Nanyang University.

    In fact, Hoan's passion for the sport spurred her to build her very own indoor badminton court within her bungalow, which she purchased in 2009. The 67-year-old used to invite friends over for rallies at least once a month, though she has not had the time to play as frequently in recent years.

    In badminton, strategy is key, as is the need to know your competitors' strengths and weaknesses, said Hoan, whose company Best World International develops and distributes beauty, nutritional and wellness products.

    "You need to judge your opponent well in the game. As in business, always make sure you are 1 step ahead of your competitors - have a strong marketing strategy, and ensure your product offerings are unique and differentiated enough to stand out from the pack."
     
    #1831 Loh, Dec 22, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2021
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  12. lodoss

    lodoss Regular Member

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    Loh is indeed fortunate to join Viktor's training stint this year and next year too.
    While he said his 2 years NS did not hinder his career, I still feel Govt should do more for sportsmen with potential.
     
  13. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Now slightly different from before. He's the champ now and others should benefit from sparring with him. :D
     
  14. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Mediacorp to air encore of Loh Kean Yew’s historic badminton world championship win on Dec 25
    [​IMG]Badmintonphoto
    Loh Kean Yew celebrating his win after defeating Srikanth Kidambi during the men's singles final badminton match of the Badminton World Federation's World Championships on Dec 19, 2021

    [​IMG]
    BY
    ASYRAF KAMIL
    Published December 23, 2021
    Updated December 24, 2021

    SINGAPORE — National broadcaster Mediacorp will be airing an encore of Singapore badminton player Loh Kean Yew’s historic win at the Badminton World Federation's World Championships in Spain on Christmas Day (Dec 25).

    Mediacorp on Thursday said that this will allow audiences to relive the excitement from Loh’s men’s singles final match against India’s Srikanth Kidambi at 5.15pm that day on its free-to-air and digital platforms.

    It will also include the prize presentation ceremony.

    During the course of the tournament, Loh had a fairytale run and beat the likes of players such as Viktor Axelsen, who is ranked top in the world, and Anders Antonsen, ranked third, before claiming the crown.

    In the final, Loh sealed the deal by defeating Srikanth 21-15, 22-20, making him the first Singaporean to win the title. On Tuesday, his world ranking was bumped up from 22 to 15.

    Besides the encore telecast of Loh’s historic win, Mediacorp will also air the second leg of Singapore’s semi-finals match against Indonesia in the AFF Suzuki Cup 2020 at 8.20pm that same evening.

    The Lions will be fighting to the end to secure a spot in the two-legged finals on Dec 29 and Jan 1.

    Making their first appearance at the semi-finals of the AFF Suzuki Cup after nine years on Wednesday, the Lions held Indonesia to a 1-1 draw in the first leg at the National Stadium.

    Catch the encore presentation of the TotalEnergies BWF World Championships 2021 men’s singles final at 5.15pm on Dec 25, 2021, Saturday, on Channel 5, meWATCH and Mediacorp Entertainment on YouTube.

    The second leg of Singapore’s AFF Suzuki Cup 2020 semi-finals against Indonesia will be live on Channel 5 at 8.20pm on Dec 25, 2021. Also available live on meWATCH. Sign in now for free at mewatch.sg/affsuzukicup2020 or catch highlights on Mediacorp Entertainment on YouTube.
     
  15. terrynguyen121988

    terrynguyen121988 Regular Member

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    thanks for information ^-^
     
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  16. YeoKC

    YeoKC New Member

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    Any thoughts on his demands for business class for the coach and physio?. Admirable , but can potentially be an issue in future between player and organisation. Just a concern.
     
  17. lodoss

    lodoss Regular Member

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    Did he?
    That is up to SBA to arrange the transport. Perhaps for flight over 6 hours, SBA could liaise with SIA for fare discount, in exchange for players doing advertisement for the airliner. :)
     
  18. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Catch badminton world champ Loh Kean Yew, S'pore athletes in Dec 26 bus parade

    [​IMG]
    Loh Kean Yew and three other Singaporean athletes will be passing by several locations in the city on open-top buses.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
    Dec 24, 2021 07:44 pm
    To cap off a stellar year for Singapore sport, local sports fans can celebrate with newly crowned badminton world champion Loh Kean Yew and three other Singaporean athletes in a bus parade on Sunday (Dec 26).

    Swimming's two-time Tokyo Paralympics gold medallist Yip Pin Xiu, pool pro Aloysius Yapp - who reached the summit of the world rankings in October - and bowler Shayna Ng will join Loh in the parade through the city centre.

    The four athletes will be on open-top buses, passing by several locations in the city between 1pm and 3pm on Boxing Day, said Sport Singapore in a statement on Friday.

    The statement added: "2021 has been a challenging year for many athletes as they train and compete amid the Covid-19 landscape. With 2021 coming to an end, it would be an opportune time to celebrate Team Singapore athletes' successes with fellow Singaporeans.

    "In view of the Covid-19 situation, specific locations and route details will not be shared prior to the parade to avoid congregation. There will also be no pit stops in between."

    The parade is organised in recognition of the athletes' achievements by the Singapore Sport Institute, in collaboration with Cuesports Singapore, Singapore Badminton Association, Singapore Bowling Federation and Singapore Disability Sports Council.

    [​IMG]
    TEAM SINGAPORE
    10 things to know about Singapore ace Loh Kean Yew
    Dec 20, 2021
    Related Stories
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    Badminton: Loh Kean Yew to meet world No. 2 Viktor Axelsen in Indonesia Open final
    Loh Kean Yew thrashes Dane in 24 mins to extend fairytale run at Indonesia Open


    The four athletes have contributed to a spectacular year for Singapore as the Republic continues to notch achievements on the international stage.

    Yip, 29, retained her S2 50m and 100m backstroke titles at the Aug 24-Sept 5 Tokyo Paralympics, while Yapp, 25, rose to world No. 1 in the World Pool-Billiard Association rankings in October.

    Bowler Ng, 32, made history by becoming the first Singaporean to win the International Bowling Federation Super World Championships women's singles title, beating teammate Cherie Tan in the final.

    Just last week, Loh, 24, gave himself and fans a stellar end to the year when he beat India's Kidambi Srikanth to win badminton's World Championships singles title, another first for the Republic.
     
  19. lodoss

    lodoss Regular Member

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    Haiz. Hope more support for others too. Don't just come out when they win, but be there when they are not too. :)
     
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  20. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Badminton: Singapore's next generation of shuttlers tipped to be 'world class'

    [​IMG]

    20-year-old Yeo Jia Min (left) and 21-year-old Loh Kean Yew are currently Singapore's highest ranked singles badminton players. (Photo: Matthew Mohan)

    [​IMG]
    Matthew Mohan
    @MatthewMohanCNA
    10 Apr 2019 06:49AM(Updated: 21 Aug 2019 04:58PM)

    SINGAPORE: During one of her family vacations many years ago, Mrs Judy Yeo had concerns that her young daughter would smash up the hotel room.

    Not because she was mischievous by nature, but because of the badminton racket that her daughter Jia Min had taken along.

    "We went to Taiwan, and she brought her racket ... She was hitting the wall (with a shuttlecock) and I was like so afraid she would break the glass and the mirror," said Mrs Yeo.

    From there we knew that she really loved the game and as parents, we support her all the way."

    Years later, the 20-year-old continues to stash a racket in her luggage during holidays - such is her devotion to the sport.

    "When we go for holidays, if she sees that there's a gym, she would go, if not she will just do her own running. Her racket travels with her," said her mother.

    "As sportsmen and women, our job has got to do with our bodies - taking care of our bodies, to make sure we are injury-free," Yeo added.

    "Even if we are on holiday, we still not really on holiday."

    It is this determination to hone her craft that has seen Yeo rise through the ranks to become Singapore's top-ranked female shuttler.

    "I enjoy doing sports, so I don’t think its a sacrifice," said Yeo, currently 32nd in the world.

    "I enjoy going to training, I enjoy constantly improving myself. I still enjoy it now and I thank God that I do because it is what I do every day."

    From the wide-eyed seven-year-old who would pester her parents for a game of badminton, Yeo is now the battle-hardened 20-year-old who her coach believes could be one of the "rising stars" in the badminton world.

    "Jia Min still needs to grow in terms of game plan and her winning mentality has to be more consistent," said national singles' coach Kelvin Ho.

    "We have to very patient with her but she has the potential to become one of the few rising stars in the senior circuit."

    Yeo's journey started on the badminton courts of Assumption English School, where she would watch the shuttlecock whiz back and forth as her parents and their friends enjoyed a casual game.

    "When we finished our match and then we wanted to rest, she would be calling us to play with her," said her mother. "Because our age, we could be playing all the time - we needed the time between breaks to rest.

    "We saw one coach there and we sent her to the coach. That’s how it started ... We just packed her off, it wasn’t like intentional, like get her started on proper training. We just wanted her not to bug us!"

    While other children would scamper off after their training sessions, Yeo would sit by the sidelines, absorbing how others played the game.

    "The coach told me that this child, there is something different he sees," explained Mrs Yeo. "She would ask the coach how to do this and how to do that, the coach would say not yet - that’s like another level."

    It turned out that Yeo had a knack for the game, and within months, she was competing in a local competition.

    And in 2017, at the age of 18, the Singapore Sports School graduate climbed all the way to the top of the Badminton World Federation (BWF)'s world junior rankings.

    [​IMG]
    Yeo Jia Min poses for a photograph. (Photo: Matthew Mohan)

    "What has not changed from the day she picked up the racket is her love for the game, her determination, her discipline. It’s in her," said Mrs Yeo.

    "It wasn’t which something we had to encourage - to go for training, wake up early. It’s really her love for the game."

    Having made the jump to the senior circuit, Yeo has set for herself a number of "small goals" which she hopes to achieve in the months to come. These include improving on her game play and physicality.

    "I think everything needs to start from small progress," she said. "People will give expectations based on our performance, definitely everybody would want to improve their best and get a medal at every games.

    "Specifically, I hope to break through to the top 15 in the world by this year or before the Olympics."

    YOUNG AND DANGEROUS

    Yeo is not the only weapon in Singapore's badminton arsenal.

    Ranked 48th in the world, 21-year-old Loh Kean Yew is currently the Republic's highest ranked men's shuttler.

    The boyish Loh made headlines for beating two-time Olympic champion Lin Dan in the Thailand Masters finals in January, but wants to move on from that result.

    "It's been quite a big hoo-ha, even though it was not that big of a thing," he said.

    Looking long-term, Loh is keen to reiterate that he still has the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in his sights.

    "It's not going to be easy because the Olympics' men's singles qualification is extremely competitive," said Loh. "I have to work towards qualifying first."

    [​IMG]
    Both 20-year-old Yeo Jia Min (right) and 21-year-old Loh Kean Yew have what it takes to be "world class", said national singles coach Kelvin Ho. (Photo: Matthew Mohan)

    As part of the national set-up, Yeo and Loh frequently travel abroad for competitions and give each other input on their performance on the court. This helps them improve their game play, said Loh.

    "We are always encouraging each other," he said. "If she watches me play, she'll tell me what I did wrong. If I watch hers, I would do the same."

    Next up for Yeo is the Singapore Open, where she is slated to face Indonesia's Ruselli Hartawan on Wednesday (Apr 10).

    Her compatriot Loh failed to make it past the qualification round on Tuesday, having lost to Hong Kong's Lee Cheuk Yiu 21-16, 21-17.

    "I'm definitely disappointed but I have to keep learning," said Loh.

    "I'm quite sad that I can't get to play more matches in front of the home crowd but I have to work harder."

    Regardless of what happens at the star-studded Singapore Open which will see the likes of Lin and women's world number one Tai Tzu Ying compete, both players still have a role to play as Singapore's shuttlers battle to gain a foothold on the fiercely competitive global scene.

    "The future is exciting for Singapore badminton and they will be role models for younger players to follow," said coach Ho.

    "Both of them have what it takes to be world class, but they have to grow up mentally compared to the top players, and learn how to manage themselves on and off court better."

    He'll be pleased to note that neither of the duo have any plans to rest on their laurels.

    "I still have a long way to go," said Loh.

    As for Yeo, she said there is still so much to do and achieve in her sport. "I can’t be satisfied with what I have achieved," she said.

    Source: CNA/mt(rw)
     
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