Jack Power was on hand to report on the Malaysia Games.
The Malaysian Games were held in UCD again this year. The Games are an international competition and coming together of the Mayalsian community, mainly from around Ireland and the UK. The Games consist of a myriad of competitions – table tennis, badminton, 3-a-side basketball, netball, and ultimate Frisbee. The Games are now held annually in UCD and cotinue to grow year upon year.
This year saw a great turnout, and a huge level of participation in both men’s and women’s games, as well as a great amount of supporters and spectators. The Games were organized by Malaysian Soc in UCD, and were considered by most of be a success. The atmosphere in the sports hall had a great character of community. The Games have come to represent the coming together and expression of culture within the Malaysian community in Ireland, and the UK.
One of the most competitive games was beyond doubt the badminton. The Men’s badminton was fast paced, hotly contested, and played with a concentration and huge intensity from start to finish. The Women’s badminton games in contrast were played with finesse rather than power, yet were equally as entertaining as the Men’s. The badminton was played with both singles and doubles sides, and provided plenty of entertainment for the on-looking spectators.
The 3-a-side basketball was another great exhibition of physical prowess. It was a close quarters contest, and more heated and physical than a full court game – as both teams had to challenge for the same net. The teams showed some excellent displays of quick and evasive moves in many of the baskets scored, and the winning team was often the one most in sync with each other. The other team games included ultimate Frisbee and netball.
The table tennis was an example of the good nature of the Games. Traditionally a very fast paced and ruthlessly competitive game, yet it was played as an open event with the emphasis on participation. All those taking part got on well and brought out the social nature of the day. The matches were all held in good spirit rather than a competitive drive to win. All the games highlighted the social and community aspect of the day, and helped to create a fantastic atmosphere between the players and supporters. The event was run and set-up exceptional well by the Malaysian Society, who ran the Games like clockwork. The day culminated in a celebratory dinner to close the Games in the UCD Clubhouse.
The College Tribune caught up with some the contestants and organizers of the event, to get a better idea of the events as a whole.
Are you competing in the Games today?
Yeah, I am playing basketball today.
What’s the name of your team?
Its M Soc, it stands for Malaysian Society.
Do you play on the UCD team?
No, I’m actually not a UCD student I’m from Leeds, I came over today for the Games. And obviously as well I’m here to visit my family.
Is your team looking to do well today in the basketball?
Yeah, actually we’ve won all our games. I think participation is more important than winning. If you win its like an extra bonus for you. I think all Malaysians from all over Ireland and the UK are coming here together, which is good for the social aspect.
Is 3-a-side basketball a tough sport?
Yeah it is. You have to very fit, but its not the most important thing, I think the most important thing is spirit. I think we have a very good spirit, our team was together for four years now – so its good.
Are you going to the dinner later?
I am. It’s important to have a chat with the people around today. It’s good to know new people, make new friends. I think that there’s been a good turnout today, I was here last year, and there’s been an increase in the turnout. Its been set up fairly well.
Overall would you say it’s been a success today?
I don’t know yet, because it’s only halfway through, but so far it’s been a great success.
What’s your name?
My name is Norfarhanim you can call me Anim. I’m a second year medicine student. This is my first time being here, participating in these games – in the Women’s table tennis. All the games look great. You can see in the Men’s singles badminton, the potential in them to go on and try to win the games!
Do you feel in terms of a woman playing sport yourself, that it’s important to get more women involved in sport?
Yeah, I think so. For me, becoming a doctor, I would recommend all my future patients to participate in physical activity, such as jogging and sports games.
Do you think there’s a good atmosphere here today?
Yeah, because there are many students here from different universities who will get to know each other, instead of competing against each other to just win the games. I think these games should be held in the future, like we have a lot of juniors coming over next year, so I think this competition should be held again.
So as part of Malaysian Soc, you’re one of the crew that helped organize and run the event today?
Yeah, the event is held every year annually. The event is for all Malaysian students from all around Europe, for example this year we have students from the UK, obviously all around Ireland; Dublin, Galway, Cork. And this year we have students as far as Egypt and some teams from France and Germany. This year we added some games, we added Frisbee and table tennis.
We are having a closing dinner in the UCD Clubhouse, where we invited the ambassador of Malaysian embassy in Ireland to officiate the event for the closing ceremony. UCD is very helpful and supporting of this event. They allowed us to book the courts and use all the equipment, so UCD is very supportive.
Do you feel there has been a good turnout today?
Yeah I think there has been a very good turnout compared to the past years. I think it is very good for Malaysian students when they come to UCD, to see the facilities of the UCD Sports Centre. I think it’s very important for foreign students to join sports teams and clubs, and they can develop themselves.
Do you think the games have been a success so far?
Yeah I think so, it’s been very good so far and it’s been progressing well so far.
The Malaysian Games finished up another successful year with a much-anticipated celebratory dinner to close the Games. It seemed a fitting end to an event that was as much driven towards the social aspect and community building emphasis of the day, as the sporting endeavors of the games themselves. It was beyond doubt that the Games were a success by all standards, and inevitable that they should continue to be held in UCD year after year.