Being recognised by one of Malaysia’s legend is one thing but being passed on a legacy ‘baton’ by the said legend is a whole different level. Imagine Dato Sri Siti Nurhaliza passing onto you the opportunity to become Malaysia’s next No.1 singer and no, we’re not talking about Aliff Syukri.
Dato Lee Chong Wei, to this day, is still known and recognised as Malaysia’s No.1 badminton player. We have a few rising badminton stars who are on their way to become legends themselves like Lee Zii Jia and Ng Tze Yong but one of them was handed the baton (or racquet).
Both Lee Zii Jia and Ng Tze Yong have a lot of potential to become the next big thing in Malaysia, as if they aren’t already. Both have competed in tough world class tournaments and received numerous medals to achieve their status today. But who will lead the future of badminton for Malaysia? The answer is: Ng Tze Yong.
At the Legends’ Vision exhibition match recently, Lee Chong Wei handed over the ‘baton’ or badminton racquet to Ng Tze Yong as a symbolic gesture for the young athlete to lead Malaysia for the future of the sport he’s well-trained in. “This is a good memory for Tze Yong. Now that I have retired, he is the Badminton Association of Malaysia’s (BAM) top player,” said the badminton legend.
This is not to say Zii Jia is any less qualified but the decision was made after the 24-year-old pulled out to participate in the upcoming Commonwealth Games due to a recurring injury. Other than that, it’s also due to the fact that the SEA games gold medalist left the association and became an independent player this year.
With Zii Jia out of the association and the upcoming games, there is now a lot of pressure for Tze Yong but lucky for him, the three-time Olympic silver medalist has full confidence in his skill. “It is not easy to be the top player in BAM, but he knows how to deal with the pressure. He has the potential and I hope he can be successful one day”.
The 2022 Commonwealth Games will be held later this year on 28th July till 8th August at Birmingham, England. We’ll definitely be cheering on for our athletes and may Ng Tze Yong do his very best for the upcoming games.