Four-time All-England singles champion Datuk Eddy Choong passed away at a hospital in George Town, Penang at 3pm today (Monday).

He was 82.

Eddy, born 1930 in Penang, won the All-England championship singles titles in 1953, 1954, 1956 and 1957. He was also the winner of the Malaysia Open on two occasions - 1957 and 1960.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek was shocked when told of Eddy's passing.

"My sincere condolences to Eddy's family. It is certainly a great loss to the nation and a great figure like him has been an inspiration to many younger players especially Lee Chong Wei," said Ahmad Shabery.

"We have lost a badminton hero and he will always be remembered."

BA of Malaysia general manager Kenny Goh echoed similar sentiments.

"I was just informed about it and it is certainly a big loss to the nation. He has set the standards and will always be known for his capabilities on the court," added Kenny.

BAM deputy president Datuk Al Amin Majid remembers Eddy as being a critical character.

"But he did it for a reason as he was very passionate of the sport and he was eager to see changes, to see the sport grow even more. Eddy will be sorely missed," he added.