All good things come to an end, regardless of whether we want them to or not. However, an end doesn’t necessarily mean it all comes to a stop. Sometimes, an end is just the gateway to a new beginning.
Former national player Iskandar Zulkarnain bin Zainuddin had a bittersweet announcement for fans yesterday (27th March). According to the men’s singles player, he is retiring from the court to coach full time.
The 30-year-old broke the news on his socials late at night. He shared that it was time to say goodbye and thanked those who had supported him throughout his badminton journey. Among those mentioned were his family, coaches, sponsor and fans. Additionally, he paid homage to groups such as the Badminton Association Malaysia (BAM), the National Sports Council and the National Sports Academy, the Royal Navy, Armed Forces, the University of Malaya and the Ministry of Higher Education.
Although he was retiring from the court, it didn’t mean that he would be parting from badminton. Instead, Iskandar explained that he would now be coaching the Ireland team. The 30-year-old actually left the national team in November 2018. He later travelled to Ireland in early 2021 to serve as Irish shuttler Nhat Nguyen’s sparring partner. He then became a coach for the Irish team but stated he hadn’t any plans to retire.
Of course, plans change and Iskandar clearly felt a calling to train others. Fans and friends have been leaving well wishes on his post. This included Datuk Lee Chong Wei and Hong Kong player Angus Ng Ka Long (伍家朗). So far, no one is begrudging his future and many are hoping he has a good retirement.
Iskandar represented Malaysia in 2009 for the Asian Youth Men’s Team Championship and won. He also won the Asian Youth and World Youth Men’s Singles and Doubles held that same year. In 2018, Iskandar represented Malaysia in the Thomas Cup and helped the team qualify for the quarter finals.
We too wish Mr. Iskandar Zulkarnain well on his next journey and hopes he enjoys his retirement!
Sources: Instagram, China Press
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