Let’s face it! We, Malaysians take the process of connecting and networking with others to a whole new level. This applies to anyone we meet in any part of the world. A little bit of digging and we’ll soon find out the American sitting next to us on a flight to London, has a great grandmother from the small town of Sekinchan! This rings true for the sports scene too.
Recently, for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, we’ve discovered the roots of 2 notable athletes — world number 2 badminton singles player, Viktor Axelson and Philippines first gold medallist, Hidilyn Diaz. According to notable sources, Axelson has trained in Cheras and Melaka while Diaz has trained in Jasin, Melaka, post-relocation after the pandemic hit the nation. Shocking, right? Well, you’re in for more surprises!
Recently, Malaysians have discovered that the gold medallist of the men’s modern pentathlon, Joseph Choong has roots trailing all the way back to our country! Apparently, Joseph’s father, Michael, is a doctor hailing from the small town of Seremban! He moved to London in the 1990s where he married Joseph’s mother, Beverly, who’s also a doctor.
Michael, who studied at the well-established St Paul’s Institution, an all-boys school, in Jalan Tan Sri Manickavasagam, encouraged Joseph and his brother, Henry to lead an active lifestyle. Both siblings are modern pentathletes too. Joseph’s parents are athletes in their own rights too. While Michael is a swimmer, his wife, Beverly, plays netball!
Adding on, Henry has participated at the Youth Championships. Joseph is currently the world number one of this sporting event. During the Olympics, he took part in seven events in 24 hours for the modern pentathlon — one of the most gruelling events to date.
Starting off with fencing, swimming, show jumping and ending the event with, shooting and running, it could be seen that the effort put by Joseph has not been in vain to clinch Britain’s first gold medal in this event. If you’d like to think that athletes only focus on sports, think again! Joseph has a degree in Mathematics from the University of Bath.
A true testament of hard work, Joseph, who’s 26 years old this year, told BBC, “I’ve always wanted to be the best in the world. This is literally a dream come true.” Regardless of his origins, we would like to wish Joseph all the best in his future endeavours and to keep aiming for the stars. This is definitely not the last time that we’ll see him on an international stage.
Source: The Vibes