Malaysian badminton has lost one of it young and brightest coaching talent.
Izuan Ibrahim, who coached Japanese superstar Kento Momota as a junior, passed away earlier today.
The 35-year-old, who hails from Kelantan has been in coma since last week due to intracranial bleeding and underwent emergency surgery to remove the blood clot affecting his brains.
Izuan, a former state coach, was supposed to join the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) coaching set-up in January.
The former teacher was admitted to the Hospital Universiti Sains Malaysia (HUSM) in Kubang Kerian, Kelantan early last week.
Izuan was a member of the Nusa Mahsuri stable and played alongside the likes of the Hashim brothers – Roslin and Hafiz – before taking up position as a coach at the club.
He joined the Ehime Badminton Club in Japan in 2011 together with another Malaysian Salim Samion. His excellent work there caught the eye of the Nippon Badminton Association that offered him a coaching job with their national back-up squad.
It was there that Izuan helped mould the formative years of Momota, the current undisputed world number one, who had bagged 11 international titles this year alone.
He joined the Suara Muda Badminton Club under the tutelage of Roslin’s father when he was 13 and within a year was called up to join the Kelantan BA Project squad.
He went on to represent Kelantan at national level competitions and with Nusa Mahsuri was hoping to make the international grade as a player. But his calling turned out to be in coaching.
Izuan graduated from the Maktab Perguruan Ilmu Khas and before making the plunge into badminton coaching, he was also a teacher at the Sekolah Kebangsaan Seksyen 1 Bandara Kinrara in Puchong, Selangor.
After his stint in Japan, Izuan joined Kelantan BA as their coach in 2016 and had also started his very own badminton academy in Kelantan.
The BAM was hoping that Izuan would be able to help uplift the standards of the Malaysian juniors. But, alas, he is no more.
While Izuan may not be as popular as his mentor Misbun Sidek, his passing away is indeed a great loss to Malaysian badminton.