Table tennis: Former national paddler Ma Liang appointed YOG team assistant coach

Former national paddler Ma Liang has been appointed the new assistant coach for the Youth Olympic Games training table tennis team. -- ST FILE PHOTO: MALCOLM KOH
Former national paddler Ma Liang has been appointed the new assistant coach for the Youth Olympic Games training table tennis team. -- ST FILE PHOTO: MALCOLM KOH

Former national paddler Ma Liang has been appointed the new assistant coach for the Youth Olympic Games training table tennis team.

The 23-year-old had won a SEA Games men's doubles gold, teaming up with Pang Xuejie to success at the 2011 Palembang Games. He also earned a men's team gold at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

With a back injury, Ma Liang has requested for an early retirement from competition and he subsequently applied for the position of an assistant coach with the national team.

With the departure of YOG head coach Cai Xiaoli last week, new head coach Shi Meisheng is pleased to have an assistant like Ma, who was chosen for his insight as a former national player and because of his dedication to the sport.

He said: "I am delighted that Ma Liang is joining the coaching team. The journey to the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games will not be an easy one, but our youth paddlers are ready to tackle this challenge. And I believe Ma Liang's experience and knowledge of the game will be a vital component to our success,"

Singapore Table Tennis Association president Lee Bee Wah added: "Ma Liang is a man of integrity and character and I believe that he will be a great mentor to the youth players. As a former player, Ma Liang will be able to share his experience and inspire the next generation of young paddlers..

"We are looking forward to the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games and we hope that our youth paddlers will continue to do their best and bring great success for Singapore."

Ma will start his new appointment on Feb 3.