The controversy surrounding the “Gao Ning incident” is over, the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports announced at a specially-arranged press conference this evening.
After almost a week of intense discussions, the MCYS and the Singapore Table Tennis Association have seemingly resolved all the issues arising from the “Gao Ning incident” which has marred the national women’s team’s capture of the silver medal at the Beijing Olympics.
Said Community Development, Youth and Sports Minister Vivian Balakrishnan who chaired the press conference: “The crisis is over.”
The Minister was flanked by STTA president Lee Bee Wah, Teo Ser Luck, the Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Community Development, Youth and Sports, and International Olympic Council executive committee member Ng Ser Miang, who is also the chairman of Project 0812.
Sitting behind them were the coaches of and the players from the men’s and women’s national squads.
(Please click here for a recap amd summary of the “Gao Ning incident”)
It was announced at the press conference that team manager Antony Lee will still be leaving the STTA now that the Olympics are over. However, he will only be leaving in November and not on 31 August, as first anounced by STTA president Lee Bee Wah last week.
Antony Lee – who was seconded to the STTA from the Singapore Sports Council last year – will use the next three months to finish up all paperwork and reports related to the Olympics. He will then move on to a new position at the Singapore National Olympic Council after that.
It looks too that head coach Liu Guodong will only be taking charge of the women’s national squad from now on.
It was announced at the press conference that there will be two head coaches from now on: a new head coach for the men’s team and one for the women’s team
Prior to this, Liu was overseeing both the men’s and women’s teams.
STTA president Lee Bee Wah – who only became the new STTA president on 12 July – also used the media confernece to publicly apologise for any hurt she may have caused during the “Gao Ning incident”.
“I sincerely apologise for causing any grievances and stress,” she said.
Teo Ser Luck called for more public support for Lee as she settles into her role as president of the national sports association so that she can bring it to greater heights.
Yours in sport
Singapore Sports Fan