Malaysians were delighted when our national Boccia athlete, Chew Wei Lun (周伟伦) won Malaysia’s third medal in his solo debut at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, bringing home the silver medal for the national contingent on Monday (1st September). Chew Wei Lun narrowly lost to Great Britain’s defending champion and world number one David Smith with a final score of 2-4.
He stayed perfect throughout the opening rounds, defeating Brazil in the preliminaries with 5-2 scores. Wei Lun, who is world number eleven managed to triumph over some of the best athletes as he scored victories over world number two, Witsanu Huadrapit of Thailand (4-3) and world number eight Korean Jung Sung Joon (9-3) before his showpiece in the final round.
Perjalanan yang cukup menarik buat Atlet Boccia Negara, Chew Wei Lun dalam memberikan aksi menariknya dalam misi meraih pingat buat negara hari ini !! TERBAIKLAH #perak #sokongmalaysia #ganbattemalaysia pic.twitter.com/Zctte5YSE9
— ASTRO ARENA (@ASTROARENA) September 1, 2021
From living a challenging life to becoming a Paralympian, 26-year-old Chew Wei Lun has certainly marked a remarkable history in his Boccia career. Beneath his success, the Johor-born athlete kept a hidden story that was unknown to many. His tough upbringing resurfaces following his success and it certainly touched the hearts of many Malaysians who follow his journey.
According to Facebook page Kuala Lumpur 2017, Wei Lun remarked that he was left by his mother when he was four years old before being taken care of by his grandfather. Then at the age of nine, he was sent to a care centre for differently abled children and learnt to be independent.
“Ever since I can remember I had to be independent. My mother left when I was a 4-year-old so my grandfather took care of me. At the age of 9, I was sent to a handicapped home. Growing up in this tough environment where I had to rely on myself wasn’t easy. But throughout everything, I’ve always loved playing Boccia,” shared then 22-year-old Wei Lun in 2017.
Chew Wei Lun’s life changed instantly when he discovered his love for the sport after being taught by a teacher at his school. His passion for the sport willed him to take a 3-month leave to compete in the 2017 ASEAN Paralympics game. Despite having a job and finding it difficult to divide his time with the sport, his effort was seen as worthwhile in line with his sacrifice.
Debutant Chew Wei Lun, who won a silver in the final at Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games has a mission to elevate the Boccia sports to Malaysians, and it surely has been accomplished. He told reporters after the medal presentation ceremony, “I didn’t expect to win a medal because we came to promote Boccia so that Malaysians know the sport better. Finally, many people have since learnt about Boccia and it is hoped that more individuals will represent the country in the future. This medal is for my team and Boccia sport.”
It was the third national medal following Bonnie Bunyau Gustin and Jong Yee Khie monumental success of bringing home gold and silver medals respectively in the Powerlifting event.
Congratulations once again to our National athletes for their remarkable achievement.