Old outfit a reminder of Wushu champ’s humble beginnings

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 30 Aug 2017

Winning smiles: Wai Kin with parents Ng Ah Chiew and Peng Hoe holding up his two gold medals in Kuala Lumpur.

GEORGE TOWN: Yeap Peng Hoe still keeps the yellow costume he sewed for his son Wai Kin to remind him how far the gold medallist in Wushu in the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games has come.

The retiree said Wai Kin used to wear the yellow outfit for competitions when he was nine.

“The yellow costume is a prized possession because it reminds me of where he is now in the sport. I also tailored a few others for him for competitions before he made it to the state team.

“He has certainly come a long way, clinching gold in the SEA Games,” said the 60-year-old retiree, who used to work as a tailor and airport limousine driver.

Wai Kin, 24, won gold medals for the men’s Jianshu (sword) and Qiangshu (spear) in his fourth SEA Games appearance. His previous best showing was a silver during the Jakarta Games in 2011.

His performance at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre took many by surprise because he upstaged his more illustrious teammate Wong Weng Son in the men’s Jianshu event.

Wong is the 2016 Asian Championships and World Cup gold medallist in the discipline.

Peng Hoe said his son benefited from all the years of hard work before making it big on the international stage.

The proud father said he used to drive Wai Kin from their home in Relau to Hock Tiek Soo Temple in Tanjung Bungah for training.

“Our house and the training place are like one end of the town to the other. It was quite a journey but still, we managed it five times a week.

“We did that for almost four years before Wai Kin was roped in to train under the Penang State Sports Council,” he said, adding that his son eventually joined the Bukit Jalil Sports School at 16.

There was no looking back since as Wai Kin won two gold medals in the World Wushu Junior Champion­ship in 2010.

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