New beginnings

Things have been shaping up the past few months. If you haven’t already heard, rowing for me has come to a standstill. Or should I say pretty much a done deal. After months of email clarifications as well as the lack of it, I guess it’s about time to spill the beans on the entire situation.

After the SEA Games in Nov of 2011, I received an email informing me that, and I quote:

“with respect to the ‘selection of national athlete’, please fall back to your respective clubs. Your club administrators will ensure that your training needs and SSC needs are met. Information about your training requirements, SRA targets, selection invitations and staging dates will be disseminated to your club administrators by SRA.”

For the purpose of background information, for SEA Games selections, I fell under a rowing club which was then run by a volunteer coach. Now that he is no longer involved, I was informed that the club has merged with another. Which leaves just 2 rowing clubs in Singapore. I proceeded to seek membership at the merged RC, only to be rejected by this email response:

“As mentioned by you earlier this year, the coaches in Singapore have got no quality and cannot commit to your “high performance”. I am coaching only happy “amateur athletes” who train despite limitations that our small humble club has. ”

“My club policy is that athletes will only get staged with my recommendation. Ordinary members will not get recommended to be staged. I cannot and will not recommend someone who will train alone and without my supervision. Ultimately, all my athletes have understood their expectations since early this year and respect any decision I make for them.”
“As for now, i cannot fulfil your training needs and I hope everything goes well with roozaimy’s barrage contact.”

I proceeded to contact the other RC, which is predominately catered for social and recreational rowing, if the club would nominate members for national selection and what the club criterias are. This was the email response:

“I also have mentioned, all clubs are allowed to nominate their members for staging.
However, it is up to any club’s discretion to do so, similar to any other sports club/association.
For D’Barrage, either Budiman or myself will assess the rowers and provide recommendations to SRA.”
That was it from them, no indication of what they are assessing on. I proceeded to contact SingaporeRowing, summarizing the situation that one club has rejected my membership, the other has no official assessment criterias for nominating its members which makes it grossly unfair for me to join, since my objective is to qualify for national selections and represent the country, which based on merit I have consistently done so, and wished to seek clarification if I am still eligible to be called up for national selections. No reply, for 3 months.
This isn’t going to end here.
Despite all of this, I have found a new home in the form of cycling. Great bunch of people, extremely hard working, committed, determined. All the ingredients for the making of future champions. And administrators who actually understand and appreciate the athlete. Really enjoying the group rides and a big thank you to everyone for making me feel welcome. I’m excited as I start learning the ropes of track cycling.


Filed under training updates

11 responses to “New beginnings

  1. Best of luck mate. I believe you have all the right characteristics, just a matter of shaping them. You’ll be smoking the boards in no time!


  2. Nathalie

    Really unfortunate and saddening for future athletes. Well at least you found a new home. Im sure your commitment will be appreciated elsewhere. I’m still waiting for your debut 🙂


  3. greenedge called you yet?? if they do tell them to call me too!!!, haha! smart move, cycling is more opportunities world-wide anyway, more developed sport and more world-wide, easier to train -> all u need is a road!! And really who doesnt know the tour de france, but find one person who can tell you what the ‘Head of the Charles’ or the ‘Henley Royal’ is, and that sculling, crew, boat race, head to head, doubles, singles are not all just drinking related terms.


  4. Tim

    All the way Wai;).


  5. zhongrong augustine

    Voices need to be heard.well done,mate


  6. Kah Beng

    It is sad to hear about your rowing career ended in this way with Singapore Rowing, it is really my pleasure to be able to meet you in a few rowing championships in SEARF 2009, and Singapore Open 2009. Wish you all the best in the Cycling, as always continue with your winning ways and make it better. Single Sculling is a different breed of people where sometimes other people dont understand how hard it is to stay committed to pursue the dream. From Malaysia.


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