Thursday, December 01, 2005

Fan Power

I'm writing this from Manila. Tonight we had the biggest cheer of all. We had just reached the restaurant for dinner when Lee Hui Seng, the Famemas chairman received an SOS call saying that our presence was needed at the badminton hall. Our male shuttlers were playing the team event. We took off immediately and only reached two hours later due to the peak hour traffic jam. The minute we arrived at the hall, we were told by some people loitering around the gate, "Malaysia needs you now. They're losing 2-0."

Yikes, losing against our arch rival, Indonesia? This was unthinkable. When we walked into the hall, Hafiz Hashim was playing the third match. He was playing his first set. We cheered like crazy, banging kompangs and drum, flailing and beating our thundersticks and yelled like lunatics. And he won in straight sets!! The tide is changing, yeah! Some of us immediately rushed to the toilet to release all our pent-up bodily liquid, then rushed back to the auditorium again. Our hunger was forgotten. As Lee said later, we sacrificed our tummies for our country.

Next Choong Tan Fook and Lee Wan Wah took to the courts. They won in straight sets too!! Double yeah! Now we're tied at 2-2.

When Wong Choon Hann went down to the court, we were delirious. The gold medal is in within touch. We egged Choon Hann on with our "Go, Malaysia, go!" and shouts of "Malaysia Boleh!" This time round, the Indonesian supporters were lesser in number compared with the last SEA Games in Vietnam where we were overpowered in number but not in enthusiasm.

Datuk Azalina Othman, Youth and Sports Minister at the VIP stand, kept waving and gesturing to us to cheer some more and we didn't let her down. When Choon Hann won, again in straight sets, she came to us and danced with the Famemas members. Choon Hann, draped in the Jalur Gemilang, came over and high-fived us. We were so happy that we've managed to help our shuttlers turn defeat into victory.

Malaysia Panalo! (Tagalog for win.)

After the win, we went back to the restaurant for dinner. Our tour guide had pleaded with them to extend their opening by one hour to accommodate us. We arrived at eleven, guzzled down the food and were on our way to the hotel at midnight.

What a night. As the Beatles sang (in the karaoke dvd in the bus), "It had been a hard day's night. It was time to celebrate. Tomorrow we have a free day off for sight-seeing and shopping.

Famemas boleh!


Allyfeel said...

Famemas boleh! Malaysia needs you! Good Job! :)

Razlin said...

Yay!! This is great news.. after the not so positive short write-up about Malaysian supporters in the STAR.. this certainly proves them wrong!

I can imagine the feeling that you guys felt after Malaysia won.

Kak Teh said...

lydia! this reminds me of those time covering All England in Birmingham...why you didnt come that time?? and when are you coming back?

Lydia Teh said...

allyfeel, razlin, kt : Yeah, Msia Boleh! Just got back.

Queen Of The House said...

Wah Lydia, sounds like you had a whale of a time there. I guess it was a fun and fruitful trip.

Lydia Teh said...

queen, very tiring trip but it was quite an experience.

Lian said...

Ah you've brought back much memories for me. Being part of the SEA Games is a special experience. I remember the waits before the opening ceremonies. Countries lined up outside for hours. What we do? We sing patriotic songs and try to sing louder than the other countries. It's definately one of those proud moments to be a Malaysian and a time you're glad you know the words to "Inilah barisan kita..." Hehehe.

Ordinary Superhero said...

Thanks to you and your Famemas gang. A win over arch rival Indonesia in this particular event is very important to the whole country.

But what happened during the singles event? You weren't there?

Anonymous said...

hi lydia
glad your lung power helped the badminton players win! And it must have been great to be in the thick of action! i think it is within the sports arena that everyone loses their "colours" and becomes one bangsa Malaysia. And that warms the heart... well it warms my heart anyway. ;-) Maya

petalingstreet said...

Wahh.. next time can have Famemas cheerleader team lah. :)