Outstanding badminton coach Abdul Shaikh, 81, inducted into Canada Games Hall of Honour

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HEADLINES BADMINTON SHAIKHABDUL Shaikh is as solid and steady as they come even at age 81.

Last month, he was one of four people inducted into the Canada Games Hall of Honour. The award was presented on February 12 at Prince George, just before the start of the Canada Winter Games where he was as coach of the BC badminton team. He will also be going to Wood Buffalo, Alberta, this summer as coach of the team for the Western Canada Summer Games.

Since its inauguration at the 2007 Winter Games in Whitehorse, the Canada Games has held Hall of Honour induction ceremonies every two years, to coincide with the Summer and Winter Games.

“The Hall of Honour has become a true hallmark of the Canada Games, where we can pay tribute to the special people who have given so much to the movement,” said Sue Hylland, Canada Games Council President and CEO.

Shaikh, whose involvement in the Canada Games began in 1971, was honoured in the Builder category for his exceptional contribution to the development and advancement of the Canada Games Movement.

“My experience as a competitor in the Canada Games in Saskatoon in 1971 was memorable in that I won the gold in the Individual Men’s Doubles in badminton in partnership with Cam Dalgleish,” said Shaikh. “I also went as coach of the Saskatchewan badminton team at the 2003 Canada Games, and coach of the BC badminton team at the 2011 Canada Games.”

The Hall of Honour distinction by no means marks the end of Shaikh’s involvement in the Games. In fact, Shaikh was already headed to Prince George in February as Coach of Team BC Badminton.

Joining Shaikh as Team Manager was Phyllis Chan, a long-time pupil, National Team athlete, 2011 Canada Games medalist, and now a coaching apprentice under Abudl’s guidance. “For Team BC to have its coach recognized at the Games brings us tremendous pride. Abdul is such a truly remarkable man, and very deserving of this honour.”

Her remarks are echoed by Badminton BC’s Executive Director Penny Gardner. “Shaikh’s prolific career as both athlete and coach has earned him recognition from a number of Canadian institutions, but his involvement in the 2015 Games as Team BC’s coach makes this occasion extra special.”

Abdul was the Racquets Professional at the prestigious Vancouver Lawn Tennis and Badminton Club for 30 years. He taught badminton and squash, and assisted the Tennis Professional. On his retirement from the club, the badminton hall at the club was named “The Abdul Shaikh Badminton Hall” in recognition of his service.

Abdul is still a mentor coach for the young athletes and coaches, and conducts Coach Education Programs.