Lee Zii Jia’s Decision to Opt Out of Road to Gold Program: A Wise Choice?

PETALING JAYA: It is up to Lee Zii Jia to decide if he wanted in or out of the Road to Gold (RTG) programme, says former doubles ace Tan Boon Heong.

What’s more important is Zii Jia is still representing Malaysia.

“In my view, there is no right or wrong in either signing or not signing. I’m sure he has his own plans and reasons,” said Boon Heong.

“Choosing not to sign is not a mistake either, as the key priority is that he is still representing Malaysia.

“I hope for everyone he achieves success in winning a historic gold medal for Malaysia.”

On Tuesday, Team LZJ dropped a bombshell by announcing that the world No. 11 Zii Jia would not require the top-up services provided by the RTG.

However, they have assured that they will continue to work closely with all the relevant stakeholders such as the Sports Ministry, the Olympic Council of Malaysia, the National Sports Council and the National Sports Institute in the lead-up to the Paris Olympics next year.

Zii Jia is the only one to turn down the offer so far.

By deciding to stand on his own, Zii Jia will miss out on the top-up services in his bid to qualify for the Olympic Games in Paris such as operational costs, training, monthly allowances, sports science, medical and nutrition.

He only needed to maintain his world rankings in top 10 to enjoy the support.

Boon Heong however said if he was given an option, he would have selected to be in RTG.

“Although I’m not very clear about the details of the RTG contract, but based on my understanding, signing would be good for me.

“Even if we don’t win a gold medal in the Olympics, there’s no risk of fines.

“Besides having a professional team for support service, there are also subsidies, whether it’s a small or large amount.

The other shuttlers part of the programme are men’s doubles pairs Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik (No. 2) and Ong Yew Sin-Teo Ee Yi (No. 12), women’s doubles Pearly Tan-M. Thinaah (No. 12) and mixed doubles pair Chen Tang Jie-Toh Ee Wei (No. 10).

Last month, independent mixed doubles pairs Tan Kian Meng-Lai Pei Jing and Goh Soon Huat-Shevon Lai Jemie were dropped due to a decline in their performance.

2023-11-17 22:39:56
#Badminton #Boon #bane #RTG #programme


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