Sports Hall of Fame Sees Three New Inductees Honoured For Their Sporting Achievements and Inspiring
Sports Hall of Fame Sees Three New Inductees Honoured For Their Sporting Achievements and Inspiring the Community
Three Team Singapore athletes have been inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame for their outstanding performances in the international arena, their service to the community and for being a role model to young upcoming athletes.
The three new hall of fame inductees are Team Singapore paddlers Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu; and Team Singapore para-swimmer Yip Pin Xiu who will be the first para-athlete inducted to the Hall of Fame.
First established in 1985, the Sports Hall of Fame has since inducted 49 athletes - from the late Mr Wong Peng Soon – the All England Badminton Champion of the 1950s; to the Asian Games gold medallists in the early 2000s. These are Singapore’s top sportsmen and women who have displayed grit, determination and resilience, showing that despite our size, Singapore can be as large as our aspirations carry us.
Says Mr Richard Seow, Chairman, Hall of Fame Committee, “We are pleased to honour these Team Singapore athletes who have excelled and fired the imagination of a nation to what is possible through focus, determination and passion. Their success will pave the way for a new generation of athletes to emerge and bring Singapore sports to new heights.”
Mr Seow adds, “Joining the Sports Hall of Fame is one of the pinnacles of Singapore sports. I hope that from their achievements, all of us will be inspired to live better through sport.”
Putting Singapore on the world map – Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu
Team Singapore paddlers Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu have played a key role in writing the history of the Singapore women’s table tennis team that clinched the world championship title in Moscow in 2010. Feng was instrumental in that victory, winning both her matches, whilst Wang was responsible for scoring that crucial one-point, that sealed Singapore’s win against China.
Beyond earning their place on the Olympic podium, including numerous accolades achieved in key sporting events, both Feng and Wang have also been recognised amongst the community for their service to Singapore – Feng and Wang were awarded the Meritorious Service Medal at the National Day Award in 2008.
Outside of the competition arena, both Feng and Wang are actively involved in engaging the community, inspiring the next generation of table tennis players.
When Feng is not competing for Singapore on the international circuit, she can be seen participating in efforts to reach out to the community to promote the sport. In the case of Wang, despite having retired from competitive sport after the London Olympics in 2012, Wang continues to give back to the community by coaching the next generation of champions. She has not only set up her own Table Tennis academy but also continues to coach at schools and ActiveSG sport centres.
Says Feng, “I feel truly humbled and honoured to be able to join the ranks of inspirational athletes who have put Singapore on the world map for sport and I thank Singapore for giving me the opportunity to live my passion. 2015 is going to be a special year for Singapore, with not only the country’s golden jubilee celebrations, but also that we are hosting the SEA Games after 22 years. I hope to be able to present Singapore with a special birthday gift by doing well at the upcoming Games.”
Wang adds, “While I have called time on my table tennis career, my love for the sport of Table Tennis will still continue. I believe everyone has an equal opportunity to be a champion and it is all about realising that skill and passion for the sport. I hope that our youth paddlers and those seeking to try the sport will be inspired to forward and give themselves that chance. Who knows, you might have a chance on the big stage and become a world champion.”
Continually chasing the dream that every athlete dreams of – Yip Pin Xiu
Despite being born with muscular dystrophy, nothing stops Yip Pin Xiu from following her dream – to be able to stand on the podium and to make Singapore proud.
Her grit and determination paid off when the Majulah Singapura was heard for the first time at the 2008 Paralympics Singapore Competition in Beijing in which Pin Xiu not only won the Republic’s first Paralympic gold medal, but also set a new world record for the 50m backstroke. In addition to her gold medal win, she also brought home a silver medal in the 50m freestyle event.
Beyond excellence at the Paralympic level, Pin Xiu continues to inspire – winning and breaking her own records and consistently achieving podium finishes at every edition of the ASEAN Para Games since 2008.
Outside of sport, when Pin Xiu is not competing, she actively engages with para athletes, gives motivational talks to schools students and participates in community outreach events.
Says Pin Xiu, “Swimming has always been something that I have been passionate about and I know that I can achieve what I want, as long as I put my mind to it. I want to still continue doing my best.”
She adds, “It is humbling to be the first para-athlete to be inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame and it goes to show that there are really no limits to sports. All you need is tenacity of focus and to stay true to what you want to achieve.”