Kelvin Ho takes over as badminton's singles head coach
Former national shuttler Kelvin Ho is Singapore badminton's new national singles coach.
Previously the assistant to Indonesian Mulyo Handoyo, who stepped down in February, Ho's promotion by the Singapore Badminton Association (SBA) takes place with immediate effect.
He will oversee the progress of the eight national singles players - Loh Kean Yew, Jason Teh and Joel Koh from the men's team and Yeo Jia Min, Jaslyn Hooi, Nur Insyirah Khan, Grace Chua and Megan Lee from the women's team.
Ho, who is with the national players in Suncheon for this week's Korea Open, thanked Mulyo for his guidance and the SBA for the opportunity.
He added: "It's an honour to be appointed national singles head coach. I'm excited about what lies ahead and we have some talented players in the pathway. Developing them along with the top players is of paramount importance.
"Of course, Kean Yew and Jia Min are the primary focus for the 2024 Olympics, but there are also other players who can challenge for these positions."
It is understood that more than 20 local and international candidates applied for the job. Five coaches from Europe and Asia were shortlisted and interviewed by a panel of six from the SBA and Singapore Sports Institute, before Ho landed the job.
SBA president Lawrence Leow said: "The SBA went through a thorough process to select the best person amongst the applicants and Kelvin's understanding of the players and his experience will help elevate the standard of our national shuttlers.
"We are confident that under his tutelage, the singles players will continue to progress and excel both on and off the court."
Ho was released as a national player in 2011, and went on to become one of the national intermediate squad's coaches. In 2018, he took on the role of assistant national singles coach.
When international badminton events resumed in 2021 amid the pandemic, the 31-year-old has been in the national singles players' corner at tournaments, including the Tokyo Olympics. Most notably, he oversaw Loh's stunning World Championships-winning run and Yeo's participation in the prestigious Badminton World Federation World Tour Finals last year.
The SBA will select his new assistant when he returns from South Korea.
SBA chief executive officer Alan Ow shared its expectations of him, saying: "We want a coach who can lead the singles programme for not just the top players but also keep developing and nurturing players on the performance pathway.
"Communication is vital at all levels but we need to make sure that all players know what is expected of them and they know where they stand. Local knowledge is important and knowledge of the players is vital as we go into a year of major Games.
"Winning medals at the upcoming major Games is important, and we have the players to do that, but fundamentally it's about developing the players and working with them to achieve results to their optimum potential."