National Sports Training Center executive director Lin Zin-rong (林晉榮) yesterday resigned following a series of allegations leveled against him by athletes and coaches.
The resignation came as the nation’s top athletes are gearing up to compete in the Asian Games, which open in August in Jakarta.
Both world No. 1 women’s badminton player Tai Tzu-ying (戴資穎) and weightlifting coach Lin Geng-neng (林敬能) have criticized the way in which Lin Zing-rong managed the national sports training facility.
Lin Geng-neng, who trained weightlifter Kuo Hsin-chun (郭婞淳), a gold-medal winner at last year’s Taipei Summer Universiade, accused Lin Zin-rong of misappropriating money from a fund that was supposed to pay for athletes’ meals and nutritional supplements.
Lin Zin-rong used about NT$3 million (US$102,905) of the fund to pay for personnel expenses, he said, adding that this led to deteriorating food quality at the training center.
Tai, on the other hand, said that the center has failed to provide a sufficient number of badminton courts for national team players, which has made it necessary for some badminton players to practice on basketball courts instead.
Lin Zin-rong has denied each allegation by providing explanations, documents and statistics on Professional Technology Temple (PTT), the nation’s largest online bulletin board system.
He also said in a statement on PTT that he had handed in his resignation on Friday last week due to health reasons.
“I humbly accept the comments regarding the way I manage the National Sports Training Center. However, all the smear tactics used against me and untruthful statements about the center not only hurt the development of the nation’s sports industry, but also bring the morale of national team athletes to an all-time low. I hope that everyone can support our athletes in their preparation for competition in the Asian Games,” Lin Zin-rong said in a statement on PTT that he said he hoped would cease all conflict surrounding his management of the center.
Lin Zin-rong defended his decision to explain himself and to display all the relevant documents on PTT, calling the platform a “beacon of light for freedom of speech in Taiwan.”
The Ministry of Education, which oversees the operation of the National Sports Training Center, said that it would consider all factors — from recorded statistics to potential miscommunications between management and athletes — in deciding whether it would accept Lin Zin-rong’s resignation.
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