Goh-ing for the ultimate prize

(From second left) Jin Wei and Soon showing off the gold medal. Looking on are Loh and Tan.

WINNING the Youth Olympic gold may have come as a surprise for national shuttler Goh Jin Wei, but it has certainly spurred her to work harder to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The newly crowned Youth Olympic Games (YOG) champion said her aim now is to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, adding that she is working on her weaknesses to close the gap between her and the world’s top 10 players.

Jin Wei said winning the Youth Olympic gold has motivated her and boosted her confidence.

“This (Youth Olympic gold) was an unexpected win, but I will work hard to get better results.

“I will start from zero and vow to train hard for every competition,” said the 18-year-old lass who practises six hours daily.

Jin Wei was speaking during a press conference initiated by Penang Youth and Sports Committee chairman Soon Lip Chee in Komtar. It was reported that Jin Wei won the first-ever YOG gold for Malaysia by winning the girls’ singles title in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Her mother Loh Bee Sim said Jin Wei will be pursuing her studies at Universiti Malaya next year.

Soon, in congratulating Jin Wei said schools should not skip physical education classes for the sake of academic lessons.

He said there should be a balance between academics and sports.

“Starting from Penang State School Council to National Sports Council and then to the biennial Malaysia Games (Sukma), a national player was finally born,” he said, adding that talents can only be discovered through competitions.

Jin Wei was also the first to win the girls’ singles title at the World Junior Championships in Lima, Peru.

She had started training under the national squad since 2014 and is trained under the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM).

Meanwhile, Soon also applauded the boys’ hockey team for bagging a gold in their debut at the YOG in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Malaysia defeated India 4-2 in the final at the Parque Polideportivo Roca Stadium on Oct 14.

This was the first time the Malaysian hockey team qualified for the five-a-side tournament in the YOG.

One of the goals was scored by 18-year-old Penang player Amirul Hamizan Azahar.

He had participated in Sukma Sarawak 2016 and Sukma Perak 2018.

“Penang is very proud of these athletes and as a token of appreciation, they will receive monetary incentive from the state,” Soon said, adding that the date and amount will be announced at a later date.

Also present were Penang Sports Council director Frederick Tan, Penang Badminton Association president Kah Kau Kiak and Penang Badminton Association secretary Leong Kin Weng.

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