Malaysia's top badminton player Lee Zii Jia quits national team to turn pro
KUALA LUMPUR — The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) president Norza Zakaria confirmed on Wednesday (Jan 19) that world No 7 Lee Zii Jia had tendered in his resignation last week.
Speaking to the press after the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics flag-handing ceremony to the Malaysian contingent, Mr Norza, who is also the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president, said: "Firstly, I want to confirm that Zii Jia tendered in his resignation on Jan 11. Following which, we have had a series of meetings.
"Zii Jia and his sister (Lee Zii Yii) met up with me, then they met Mr Kenny Goh (BAM secretary general), and we tried to persuade him to stay. This is because we have looked after him and supported him since he was 13.
"After coming this far, we don't want to lose him. We wanted to take him to the next level like we did with Lee Chong Wei, but Zii Jia has made it clear that he is not Chong Wei, and he cannot handle the pressure. He wants to achieve things on his own and in his own space.
"We respect the views of everyone but we are an institute, so I called for a council meeting on Jan 17 to hear from the members because he is our main asset, and we don't want to undermine his future.
"After listening to his side, the council has decided, and we have given the mandate to our deputy president Jahaberdeen Yunoos to make an official announcement on Friday at 4pm.
"It remains to be seen if Zii Jia will be penalised for quitting the national side prematurely or will be made to pay a compensation, if he decides to continue his career as a professional.
T. (2022c, January 19). Malaysia’s top badminton player Lee Zii Jia quits national team to turn pro. TODAY. https://www.todayonline.com/world/malaysias-top-badminton-player-lee-zii-jia-quits-national-team-turn-pro-1794591