Singapore badminton CEO to step down
Ronnie Lim will leave his post on Jan 31 to pursue personal goals
Singapore Badminton Association (SBA) chief executive officer Ronnie Lim will step down at the end of the month to pursue "personal goals", after about three years at the helm.
Lim, 42, is the second head in local sports to announce his departure in consecutive days, after the announcement of Great Eastern-Yeo's S.League CEO Lim Chin's exit on Tuesday.
In a press release, former banker Lim said: "These three years at SBA have been very fulfilling for me. During this time, we introduced our first Singaporean chief coach and encouraged more locals to pick up badminton as a professional sport.
"I also had the opportunity to be involved in the SEA (South-east Asia) Games in Singapore and Myanmar, Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Asian Games in Incheon and the recent Rio Olympics.
"My greatest moments are witnessing our athletes win medals at these major Games which make me feel especially proud as a Singaporean."
The former school player's tenure as local badminton's top administrator coincided with a period of change in the association.
Appointed in November 2013 with the task to help SBA secure sponsors, Lim also had to handle the shock removals of national coaches Luan Ching and Yoo Yong Sung just three months later.
During his three years at SBA, senior shuttlers such as Gu Juan, Derek Wong, Vanessa Neo and Yao Lei retired from the sport, leaving a leadership and experience void among the players.
But, the team also achieved some notable results.
In 2014, the men's team qualified for the prestigious Thomas Cup Finals for the first time since 1986.
That same year, Wong won Singapore's first silver medal in the men's singles at the Commonwealth Games, while Chayut Triyachart and Danny Bawa Chrisnanta clinched a silver in the men's doubles.
At the 2015 SEA Games, Loh Kean Yew, then 17, won a bronze, while Yeo Jia Min won both the girls' singles and doubles at the Badminton Asia Junior Championship last year.
SBA president Tan Kian Chew said: "Ronnie, together with our coaches, has set up an effective and sustainable system to recruit and train our national players.
"I thank him for his contribution to the sport. He has also informed me that he wishes to try something different now that he has been involved in all the major games. I wish him all the best in his future endeavours."
SBA said it will start its search for Lim's successor immediately.
Asked who would step in for Lim before his successor is appointed, Tan said: "I will spend more time on SBA matters. The management committee and I will attend to all the important matters which were previously handled by Ronnie Lim for the time being."