PETALING JAYA: It has been a busy few months for 27-year-old national basketball player Ma Chee Kheun.
Not only has he been working his way back to full fitness after suffering a hamstring injury in March, he was also busy preparing for his wedding.
He married his girlfriend of 10 years – Michelle Phuah – on July 16.
The Sarawakian cager, who is adept at playing either as a shooting guard or point guard, hardly had time to spend with his wife.
He flew off to Auckland, New Zealand, on July 20 to join his teammates on a 12-day playing tour in preparation for the KL SEA Games.
“I’m pleased to have finally tied the knot. We’ve been together since 17 and agreed to get married after 10 years,” said Chee Kheun.
“It does seem a little rushed because I had to fly back to Miri for the ceremonies. We initially planned to get married after the SEA Games, but our families decided that July was a better time.
“My wife is very supportive of my career. She used to travel along to lend support and I’m lucky to have her.
The 1.8m-tall Chee Kheun is now relishing the challenge of sealing a spot in coach Goh Cheng Huat’s final 12-member roster for the Games.
“Having undergone rehabilitation since March, I’m ready to fight for my place in the team.
“Coach Goh has told us that the 12 players in New Zealand are not necessarily the final squad for the SEA Games, so I need to give it everything I’ve got.”
Chee Kheun and US-born Perry Lim only arrived in Auckland two hours before the team’s first match against the Manukau Counties.
Malaysia won 90-80.
They beat the Waitakere West Auckland Basketball side 79-70 yesterday and will face the HoopNation New Zealand Select at Whanganui on Tuesday.