As expected, the coach had promoted the boys to Intermediate level in October. I had to upgrade them to a 3-times a week training package. I might as well since my wife took a long holiday to the
Interestingly the level of training in Intermediate level was more rigorous. Both Intermediate and Advance level received attention from the head coach Pak Budi Rijanto. The hours were also extended to 3 hours per session sometimes 4. Aaron just turned nine on 7th Oct was not used to the grueling demands of this new training regime. He suffered fainting and vomiting spells. Ryan initially had mild muscle pulls on his legs too. I began to accept that Pak Budi’s Indonesian style of rigorous training had become their primary badminton diet and I had to relegate my coaching to a supporting role.
It was quite a challenge to squeeze out the time from the boys weekly academic tuition schedules. In the end, they had to sacrifice some of the tuition classes in favour of their increased badminton trainings. The boys put up with it because Pak Budi was urging them to double up their efforts in training and they knew they have only but three weeks to prepare for the tournaments.
I also began focusing the boys on doubles sparring. I imparted as much knowledge as I could to them in this short period of time. They have much to learn about how to cover the court efficiently and develop an understanding between them. They still lacked fluidity on defensive and attacking formation as well as shuttle placement techniques.
Pak Budi had a particular eye on Intermediate players because players at this level were easier to shape and mould. He spoke to me about exposing Aaron to overseas tournaments. He had Aaron in mind to fill in under 9 category for the Junior Tournament held in Miri,
Sarawak on 16th November. Much as I was honoured by the invitation, I regretted that I had to turn it down because Aaron already had to be in his compulsory Church Camp in preparation for his first Holy Communion on the same date.
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