Indonesian badminton coach refers to Malaysia’s Chinese-indian shuttlers as ‘black and white’, causes uproar among Malaysians

Malaysia and Indonesia seem like they’re constantly at each other’s throats despite their close proximity and similarities.

In the latest Malaysia-Indo internet feud, an Indonesian badminton coach was caught on camera referring to Malaysian pair Pearly Tan-Thinaah Muralitharan as “black and white”.

In a match break that was broadcast on television, the coach was overheard saying those words when giving instructions to his shuttlers.

The Indonesian duo of Febriana Dwipuji Kusuma and Amalia Cahaya Pratiwi were defeated by Pearly-Thinaah today at the ongoing French Open, moving them into the quarterfinals.

The video made its rounds and gained backlash from Malaysians after Twitter user @Shahaidin posted it. At the time of writing, the tweet had more than 800 retweets and more than a thousand likes.

Malaysians warned the coach that referring to them by their skin colour is racist and demanded an apology.

Some said if the tables were turned, Indonesians would be fuming on social media.

There were also Indonesians that defended the coach. They claimed he was just being strategic by not using their names and that it had nothing with race. Some of them also argued that Malaysians still refer to them as ‘Indon’ which is considered derogatory in Indonesia, however, they are not making a big deal of it.

“I don’t think the coach meant to be racist, but it was meant to make communication easier. This was also not spoken publicly but internally between the coach and players. It would not have been said if it was not spoken in these conditions. Nevertheless, it should not have been said.” 

“[The coach] was just simplifying things, there is no problem. It’s not like it was spoken in public, but limited to the coach [and the players] to make it easier for them to understand. Malays are so sensitive lol.”

“The coach does not know all foreign players. What he said was just to simplify things. Coach Herry once instructed Kevin, when he was playing against Li/Liu, to “attack the skinny one.” That’s not racist or bullying behavior. It was for simplification.”

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