By Henry Chen
“This is not necessarily a bad thing. Feng Tianwei can now make her decisions independently.” Liu Guodong said.
Liu Guodong is a former coach of the Singaporean Table Tennis Team. In 2008, Feng Tianwei, Wang Yuegu and Li Jiawei were able to win the Olympic Team silver medal after reaching the finals of the Women’s Team event. Liu Guodong was part of that success as the coach.
Eight years after, Singapore has decided to implement some bold changes. Feng Tianwei, who is the only person left in the team from the Beijing Olympic line-up, was just dismissed by the Singaporea Table Tennis Association.
After this week’s shock announcement from the association, Feng Tianwei issued her statement explaining her next move.
“Although I have already left the National Team, I would still continue to represent Singapore in the international arena in a new way. I will not leave. Thank you everyone.” Feng Tianwei wrote in her Weibo account last 28th October.
Liu Guodong has a piece of advice to his former disciple:
“When players encounter this kind of turbulence in their careers, the best way is to utilise the results to prove their worth, to prove the other wrong.”
The association’s plan is edifying their young locals to be the next names who will represent Singapore in the international circuit in the future. But what does it take to implement such plan successfully?
Liu Guodong said that training a local player is not something that the team wants to have. It is something that the team should do to have one.
“You need to give them a detailed plan. It should include how to help them become world-class players. How to choose and how to implement, and how to ensure the implementation are all critical,” he added.
“Cultivating young local players has been the desire of Singapore. But they would need to invest a lot of resources to strengthen the training system,” Zhou Shusen said.