SINGAPORE: Tan Howe Liang is Singapore’s first Olympic medallist, having won a silver in weightlifting at the 1960 Rome Olympics.
Paddler Feng Tianwei, who won the Olympic bronze medal in the women’s individual event on Wednesday, now joins Mr Tan as Singapore’s second singles Olympic medal winner.
When asked by Channel NewsAsia on the bronze medal win, the 79—year—old said "sports in Singapore has improved tremendously but we still can’t catch up with some other countries because we don’t have athletes who are willing to sacrifice".
"That’s the most important thing a sportsman must have —— the spirit of sacrifice."
Mr Tan also believes that to do well competitively, there must be a good match—up between a good athlete and a good coach.
"The athlete and the coach also need to co—operate and work well together" said Mr Tan in Mandarin.
"As an athlete, you will also need to train very hard. You can’t have everything and will need to make some sacrifices."
Tan who was drawn to take up weightlifting in the 1950s after watching a competition, financed his own training and expenses, while holding two jobs — a clerk and a mechanic.
Today, Tan serves as an Ambassador for Active Seniors.
He joined over 80 active agers in a mass exercise at City Square Mall on Friday.
The event was part of NTUC FairPrice’s new "Celebrating Active Seniors" programme.
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