After 11 years with the national team, Tan Boon Heong finally call it quits by submitting his resignation letter to BAM (Badminton Association of Malaysia).
Boon Heong once formed a successful partnership with Koo Kien Keat from 1996-2013 and Boon Heong himself confirmed that he had handed in his letter but refused to comment.
Men’s doubles specialist Tan Boon Heong has quit the Malaysian badminton team after a glittering 11-year tenure.
Boon Heong’s resignation is the third in the men double’s department as Hoon Thien How and Lim Khim Wah also bid farewell to the national badminton body.
Thien How and Khim Wah bowed out last month stating that they had reached the prime of their careers after serving the nation for about 10 years.
It wasn’t a surprise for Boon Heong to quit the national team as he had been missing from training over the last few days. Besides that, Boon Heong was also not present when BAM unveiled their new equipment sponsor Victor on Tuesday at the Juara Stdium in Bukit Kiara.
Boon Heong might rekindle his partnership with Koo Kien Keat who had earlier turned professional last year.
After Kien Keat left, Boon Heong had not been prominent. He played with Thien How and Ow Yao Han but achieved only mediocre results.
Together with Kien Keat, the duo had produced spectacular results for Malaysia in the first few years of their partnership.
Their outstanding results include winning the 2006 Doha Asian Games gold medal and bagging the All-England title in 2007. In the first six months of 2007, they were unbeaten.
Boon Heong played with Kien Keat in six World Championships – 2007 (Kuala Lumpur), 2009 (Hyderabad), 2010 (Paris), 2011 (Wembley) and 2013 (Guangzhou). Their best showing was reaching the 2010 final where they lost to China’s Cai Yun-Fu Haifeng.
Last year at Copenhagen, Kien Keat paired up with Boon Heong again and they lost 21-14, 10-21, 19-21 to Taiwan’s Lee Sheng-Mo and Tsai Chai-hsin in the third round.
The BAM allow top players to leave if they had served the nation in major tournaments like the World Championships, Asian Games, Olympic Games and Thomas Cup Finals.