PETALING JAYA: An overjoyed Pamg Joheng, who works as a contract labourer, stayed at his home in Taman Samarex, Kota Samarahan in Kuching yesterday.
It was to honour a promise made to his daughter, national diver Pandelela Rinong.
He had pledged not to go outside in the event she wins an Olympic medal in London.
Pandelela then made history by becoming the first Malaysian to clinch a bronze in women's 10m platform individual final in the early hours of Friday (Malaysian time).
It was a magnificent medal, considering the pressure the 19-year-old was under after a poor first dive left her in 10th place in the 12-diver field.
Pamg, 46, was proud of his 19-year old daugther, the eldest in a family of four. , had contributed to Malaysia's sporting history by being the non-badminton player to win an Olympic medal.
“I promised her before the Olympics that I would not go to work the next day if she won a medal. She wanted me to rest at home and share her glory.
“Watching television this morning, at first I thought she had no chance. But surprisingly, other divers also did not do well and I am proud that she fought her way back.
“She has always had a mind of her own and did not let the pressure get to her. The whole Bidayuh community is also proud of what she has achieved,” said Pamg, who added that he would have loved to go to London to watch her compete but had to work to support the family.
His wife Hartini Anak Lamim, 44, had gone to London to be with Pandelela - a trip made possible by Dutch Lady Malaysia, which sponsored her flight and stay there.
“Pandelela has helped the family from the incentives she earned over the past two years. I'm glad to see her rewarded. She has been training very hard and has not returned to stay with us all this year.
“There was once when she came to attend a function but flew back to KL immediately. But I understand as she needs to prepare for competitions,” he added.
Pandelela is expected to return home to a big reception by the Sarawak government and her community next week.
On what awaits Pandelela when she gets home, Pamg said she was a simple person.
”She does not ask for anything but usually asks her mother to cook her favourite dish - fried sambal petai with prawns.”
There are rumours that she would be rewarded with a Datukship by the state government.
Meanwhile in SEPANG Hartini said she could not hold back her tears when her daughter received the bronze medal.
“I am so proud of her. She injured her back during a training session before leaving for London, yet she was so determined to give her best,” she said at the at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport upon returning from London last night.
Hartini said Pandelela, who began training since she was eight, was a very disciplined and motivated girl, who never gave up on her dreams.
“I knew she was in pain, but she did not want to give up,
“I just kept praying very hard for her to win,” she said, adding that the family's humble background had never been a obstacle for Pandelela.
> CONGRATS PANDELELA!!! For Olympic Bronze!! U r our Msian HEROINE!! U deserve it! LOVE U! Malaysia Boleh!! Yes! Yes!
> No public holiday, no free Baskin Robbins, no nasi kandar kayu ... But she still won a bronze medal for Malaysia. Congrats Pandelela Rinong!
> Congrats to Pandelela Rinong for bringing home the bronze! Malaysia is very proud of u! #ThankYouPandelela.
> Pandelela Rinong has created Malaysian diving history. The 19-year-old from Sarawak won a bronze medal in the women's 10m individual platform.
> @LuluGDolphine congratulation Pandelela for winning bronze! #ThankYouPandelela Malaysians are so proud of you!!
> In the sky watching Pandelela Rinong's 10m platform win! Congratulations! 1st Malaysian girl to win a medal at the Olympics!
> She did it! Congratulations Pandelela on capping off her incredible Olympic journey with the Bronze medal. We are so proud of you!
> Pandelela Rinong. First Malaysian female athlete to win an Olympic medal. First non-badminton medal. You created history, girl!
> TAHNIAH PANDELELA!!!! GANGSA MILIK MALAYSIA!!!
> Dear Pandelela,You are our real, under-appreciated, under-publicised #Heroine of this #Olympic Games.WE PROUD OF YOU! http://t.co/SubBkvfL.
> Pandelela's our 1st female Olympic medalist, 1st female flagbearer, & 1st medalist outside of badminton. And she's 1st in our hearts now!
> Congrats! Pandelela stands for Perseverance, Achieve, Noble, Dive, Excellent, Lead, Endeavour, Love, Aim! CYY.
> Pandelela, u r our super duper Olympic hero! Incredible win against strong competitors. U proof that its not yr background but sheer hard work that determines success. May
> Bravo to Pandelela 4 adding one bronze medal to Malaysia. SMY PD
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