KUALA LUMPUR: The MCA has paid tribute to the Malaysian mixed doubles badminton team for winning a silver medal at the Rio Olympics which is the first for Malaysia in the event.
Its president Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai also lauded cyclist Azizulhasni Awang for getting the bronze medal, another first in the keirin event.
Liow said he was "deeply disappointed" with certain press reports for their negative coverage on Goh Liu Ying and Chan Peng Soon.
"I am disappointed with their comments. It's utter rubbish. The pair did Malaysia proud for winning us a medal," he said.
He said the mixed doubles team had gone to the Olympics without anyone predicting they will even win a medal.
The two, he said, had performed beyond expectations and faced a top ranking opponent team in the final.
He said the entire country cheered for the pair.
"Our badminton team has managed to unite the entire country. All Malaysians regardless of their races and religions are behind our team."
Liow said in a statement that he had followed the comments posted on Facebook on the coverage of these media and that he was glad that their readers were upset with their slant.
He said once again Malaysians had lived up to their patriotic spirits.
"It is surely not true that they let down Malaysians by not winning the gold medal.
"It's the media concerned who let themselves down with their unrealistic and negative expectations."
Liow said the MCA will honour them and that the party would discuss how they should be rewarded.
He said the MCA would also reward Azizulhasni for his triumph.
"They are the epitome of the grit Malaysian Boleh spirit," he added.
Liow said the quest for the gold medal had not ended and urged Malaysians including the media to encourage the badminton players.
"Be positive and supportive. Malaysians must unite."
"I am looking forward to the first gold medal."