PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia emerged as the overall champions of the Asean Primary School Sports Olympiad (APSSO) 2010 held in Jakarta, Indonesia, between Nov 4 to 10.
The Malaysian contingent bagged nine gold medals, one silver and five bronze in football, badminton, chess, table tennis and athletics.
Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin met the team at his office here when they arrived home yesterday.
Football striker Mohamad Faisal Abd Halim, 12, said his team's success was due to hard work and plenty of training.
"It was not easy to keep pushing ourselves, but it paid off when we won our gold medal.
"I hope to be a full-time football player when I grow up – just like Wayne Rooney," he said.
Champion of the girls' badminton Thinaah Muralitharan said winning the game was not her main focus.
"I didn't think of winning or losing when I was playing, but just wanted to make sure I gave my full effort," said the 12-year-old who also bagged a bronze medal in the girls' singles tournament.
Besides Malaysia, six other countries took part in this year's event. They were Brunei, Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
The APSSO is an initiative by Indonesia's National Department of Education to promote solidarity among children in the region, and is open to pupils below the age of 13 from Asean countries.