Go prove you ain't 'lembik'

                                                  “Now they ask for air-conditioned rooms. Last time we used to get 'sauna' rooms.”

Ramjit Nairu was relating the conditions of the stuffy and uncomfortable hostels national athletes in the 80s used to stay in. The name may not a ring a bell to the younger generation but the lanky former high jumper was once a celebrated man, having won the bronze medal at the 1985 Asian Track and Field competition.

As former athletes and friends paid their final respects to national hurdler Ishtiaq Mubarak at his house in Ampang on Friday, Ramjit managed to catch up with several of his former compatriots.
Among those who joined the conversation was former national decathlete Hanapiah Nasir.

“If they can survive staying at Pulapol (quarters), they can be champions lah. Lunch was just nasi (rice) and ikan goreng (fried fish) but we didn’t make a big deal out of it. We slept on the floor. Kalau sekarang, (if now)… hmph!”

Hanapiah was referring to our current breed of athletes.

It is typical for the old-timers to compare life then and now. Haven’t we heard our mothers claiming they could buy a mee laksa at their school canteen for just 10 sen or when our fathers used to cycle to school in the sweltering sun? 

Some of us grew up playing galah panjang or climbing rambutan trees while kids these days keep themselves busy playing Angry Birds on a handheld device.

Times have change.

Read more in Haresh Says, as published in The Malay Mail today.

HD says: Old school still rocks


  1. indeed time have change...just read a local daily today..we could afford sending one athlete to Russia recently, Rayzam, the 110m hurdler..he's no where near Arwah Ishtiaq or even Nurherman Majid ... what happened to olahraga negara?
    yearning for the next B.Rajkumar, Khoo Chong Beng, Nordin Jadi, Saik Oik Chum, V Angamah etc ...


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