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Fat boy Schooling finally realises he has overstayed his welcome and retires


Alfrescian (Inf)

Olympic golden boy Joseph Schooling retires from swimming​


Olympic gold medallist Joseph Schooling has retired from competitive swimming. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Rohit Brijnath
Assistant Sports Editor

APR 02, 2024

SINGAPORE - Eight years after his stunning success at the Rio Olympics, Singapore’s greatest athlete Joseph Schooling has called time on his career.
The 28-year-old swimmer, whose last major medal came at the 2021 SEA Games, told The Straits Times that he is going to play golf and work in the venture capital space with two partners in the sectors of “health and wellness, tech and sustainability”.
Singapore’s only Olympic champion, who won a 100m butterfly gold in 2016 against a field studded with talent including American legend Michael Phelps, said in an exclusive interview with ST that “it’s kind of surreal to actually be going to a swimming pool and spectating instead of competing”.
The highly competitive son of Colin and May Schooling said he was both lucky and thankful for his parents, his coaches and his support team.
They gave him, he said, “the opportunity to be able to freely express who I am in the water. No judgment, no hesitation, complete trust and love”. “To have to leave all that behind. Yeah, it sucks.”
Schooling’s career was not without bumps, most famously, the revelation in 2022 that he had consumed cannabis overseas.

For an athlete who considers himself a role model for young people, it was a situation both “embarrassing and humiliating”.

Schooling was named Sportsman of the Year six times, including five consecutive times from 2015-19.
His career started to flatten out after two gold medals in the 50m and 100m butterfly at the 2018 Asian Games.
His winning time in Rio of 50.39 seconds was an Olympic record, but he never swam as fast again.


Swimmer Joseph Schooling after winning gold in the men's 100m butterfly final at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. PHOTO: ST FILE
The reasons were many and complex, but Schooling – who suffered from scoliosis, a curvature of the spine –candidly admitted to “complacency” after Rio. He was faster than everyone and expected to remain so.
Did he lack the same focus after 2016, he was asked, and he replied: “I would say the first year, yes. Second year, I was playing catch-up. And then the third year, I was just overthinking.”
But Schooling, after gruelling years in pursuit of his Olympic dream, was also tired and believes he should have stepped away for a while and returned renewed.
Schooling’s Olympic gold, which propelled Singapore into international headlines, was the result of his parents’ belief in his talent and their bravery in making the financial commitment to send him to The Bolles School in the United States.

In Bolles, coach Sergio Lopez became his “father figure”, and the testing environment focused his competitiveness.
“If you want to be the best,” explained Schooling, “you’ve got to be surrounded by the best. You’re a by-product of your atmosphere.”
After Bolles, Schooling joined the University of Texas, where he was mentored by the legendary Eddie Reese.
Asked if he would have won Olympic gold without Reese, the Singaporean paused briefly: “I think I would have, but I wouldn’t have had as much fun doing so.”
In Rio 2016, apart from nerves on the bus ride to the stadium, Schooling believed it was his race to lose.
In the call room, he thought: “OK, I’m about to do something really special...
“And once I felt like I had my foot down, there was no way I was gonna let up.”

(From left) Chad le Clos, Michael Phelps and Joseph Schooling with their medals after the men’s 100m butterfly final in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on Aug 12, 2016. PHOTO: ST FILE
Singapore welcomed him home with a bus-top parade, and Schooling’s influence on young athletes in small ways is evident.
“People want to be athletes,” he said, “or people want to go to the Olympics one day, or start a sport.”
And, he continued, “more importantly than that, I think when people look at that, they think, OK, this guy, scoliosis, he’s in the Olympic final, he beats the greats, if he can do it, why not me?”
As legacies go, there can be no better one.


Alfrescian (Inf)
Now all the por lum par tributes are solicited

Schooling retires: Tributes pour in for Jo, who made us proud to be Singaporean​


Pupils at Yuhua Primary School relishing the chance to exchange high-fives with Olympic champion Joseph Schooling (right), on Aug 16, 2017. PHOTO: ST FILE

David Lee
Sports Correspondent

APR 02, 2024

SINGAPORE – On the Saturday morning of Aug 13, 2016, full-time national serviceman Dashan Kumaran is seated on a ferry from Pulau Tekong to the SAF Ferry Terminal in Changi.
It is no regular commute this time. All eyes on the vessel are glued to the TV screen as national swimmer Joseph Schooling dives into the pool over 15,000km away in Rio de Janeiro. And 50.39 seconds later, the crowd breaks out in hearty cheers as their countryman claims Singapore’s first Olympic gold medal, winning the men’s 100m butterfly final.
Kumaran, now a 26-year-old media professional, remembered how everyone was transfixed by the race, and the pride and ecstasy that followed.
He said: “We were united in willing Joseph Schooling to win, and I still remember the whoops of joy and goosebumps as everyone on board went wild when he actually did win. At that moment, I felt really proud to be a Singaporean.”
The sports fan is among the many who have paid tribute to Schooling after he decided to call time on his career.
Singapore Aquatics president Mark Chay said: “He broke the glass ceiling and proved that with hard work and the right approach, Singaporeans can win Olympic gold in a highly competitive sport like swimming. He had and continues to have a direct and positive impact on the sport.
“His legacy as Singapore’s first Olympic gold medallist will never be taken away. Even as he calls time on his competitive career, I hope he continues to contribute to aquatics and perhaps takes on leadership roles either locally or internationally.”

Sprint queen Shanti Pereira, who won the women’s 200m gold at the Asian Games, added: “He put Singapore on the sporting map, so many people know Singapore because of what he did.
“It was an incredible moment not just for Singapore sport but every Singaporean too because in such great moments, the nation comes together and embraces the fact that our country is represented in this way.”
Schooling’s historic moment in Brazil sparked more than just joy and celebrations back home, as his exploits against a star-studded field that included 23-gold Olympic champion Michael Phelps galvanised a nation and inspired a generation of young swimmers.

It also raised the profile of the sport here, as The Straits Times reported swim schools receiving between 20 and 200 per cent more inquiries in the week after his win.

Joseph Schooling slapping the water in joy after winning the 100m butterfly at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Aug 12, 2016. PHOTO: ST FILE
National men’s 50m, 100m and 200m breaststroke record holder Nicholas Mahabir shared how he had always wanted to play water polo, until he witnessed Schooling’s Olympic triumph.
The 18-year-old, who asked Schooling for a wefie when training with the national youth water polo team at the OCBC Aquatic Centre in 2019, said: “Any time it gets hard for me, I just think if Jo can do it, why wouldn’t anyone else be able to do it?”

Schooling’s teammates also paid tribute to their senior, noting the strong work ethic that propelled him to the top, his strength in adversity and his kind nature outside the pool.
Jonathan Tan, who has qualified for the Paris 2024 Olympics in the 50m freestyle, said: “You can tell when he is not having a good session because he won’t be particularly happy. You can see he cares and it affects him when he is not doing well, and he will find solutions to swim faster. Even if he is not at his best, he never gives up.”

Joseph Schooling, Singapore’s first Olympic gold medallist, toured the city on a 24km victory parade from Kallang Leisure Park to Raffles City, on Aug 18, 2016. PHOTO: THE NEW PAPER
The 22-year-old also recalled how Schooling encouraged him after the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay team were disqualified in the final at the Hanoi SEA Games in 2022.
Schooling’s influence also extended beyond the swimming pool.
National badminton player and 2021 world champion Loh Kean Yew remembered watching Schooling’s 2016 race at the Singapore National Olympic Council’s office.
The 26-year-old said: “It was awe-inspiring to see a Singaporean beating world-class rivals to stand on top of an Olympic podium. As I was starting out on my own full-time sports journey, Schooling proved it is possible for an athlete from a small country like Singapore to achieve big things at the highest level.”
Former national swimming coach David Lim, who worked with Schooling before he moved to the United States, recalled marvelling at his “tremendous” kicking ability.
The 57-year-old also paid tribute to Schooling’s parents, May and the late Colin, who believed in and helped their son achieve his dream of becoming an Olympic champion.
He said: “Parents here are afraid of losing out. When their children are caught out by examinations and grades, the first thing to go is sports. This is why as a coach, I really appreciate parents who do not worry about grades and allow their children to put their heart and soul into swimming.”

Perhaps more than most, Spanish coach Sergio Lopez has had a front-row seat to Schooling’s development as the pair first worked together at The Bolles School in Florida from 2010 to 2014. They would later reunite for the Olympics in 2016 and 2021.
Paying tribute to his protege whom he described as goal-oriented and hard-headed, the 55-year-old former Singapore national coach said: “He wanted to be the best, and he wanted to be an Olympic champion. I had to navigate through his growing pains to teach him to stay the course and to fight and work for the dream.
“But that’s what makes him, Ryan Murphy, Caeleb Dressel and Kevin Cordes champions. Swimmers I’ve coached at that level are hard-headed and they are special.
“At the ready room in Rio, we chatted a little bit, I gave him a hug, and he told me, ‘Sergio, don’t worry, I got this’, and I got goosebumps from how much he believed he was going to win.”

Olympic 100m butterfly gold medallist Joseph Schooling taking a wefie with a fan during the meet-and-greet session at Kallang Wave Mall on Nov 14, 2018. PHOTO: ST FILE
Lopez noted that it is important for world-class athletes to be able to turn the chapter and move on from their competitive careers.
He added: “The process to get that gold medal is relevant for the lessons he has learnt. Jo has had, for his short life, an amazing and impressive and interesting life full of experiences that hopefully he can bring to the table to his business, to his country, to help younger kids find their dreams.”


Alfrescian (Inf)
No doubt Roti Briyani was asked to write a glowing tribute to Schooling

Sporting Life​

Joseph Schooling took us to brilliant places we’d never been to before​


Rohit Brijnath
Assistant Sports Editor


Joseph Schooling of Singapore reacting after winning the Rio 2016 Olympic Games men's 100m butterfly final. PHOTO: ST FILE

APR 02, 2024

In the Museum of Modern Art in New York rests an uncommon exhibit. It is a grainy photograph of a footprint from July 1969. It belongs to Edwin Aldrin, the second man on the moon. The extraordinary always leave an impression.
Joseph Schooling did not go as far as the moon, but one might say he circumnavigated the earth in water. After all, he’d swum at least 40,000km before he arrived at a destination most athletes never reach. A boy from our suburbs on the highest step of an Olympic podium with Michael Phelps looking up at him.
This picture, indelibly imprinted upon us, should hang in a museum, too.
Everything finishes. Athletic careers peter out and we move on to another star. But we look back with gratefulness for Schooling took us to new places, let us dream in a size and colour we hadn’t dared and opened conversations we’d never considered. Could he retain his Olympic title? He didn’t, but did we ever imagine we’d be talking about such a thing?
Nations wish for happiness, prosperity and also citizens to admire. Someone to win a Nobel Prize, head Unicef, star in a Martin Scorsese film, cure a disease. For us, these things would remind a small land that we are constrained only by space not by imagination.
The great contribution frees a people. Olympic gold, for instance, was where other nations went. For Singapore it was merely an idea, but in 50.39 seconds Schooling turned it into a war cry. He made history but also extended our psychological geography. When we told our kids that the sky was the limit it was no longer a bland figure of speech. Proof had come the hard way, in a hard sport.
In the Bay of Zea, where the ancient Greeks parked their galleys, the first swimming events of the modern Olympics were held in 1896. It was one of the nine original sports and was ruled by giants – Michael Gross had a wingspan of 2.13m – and heroes who played Tarzan in the movies. It took 28 Games for Schooling to take a South-east Asian to gold.

“He beat Michael” has become a statement so casually tossed into conversation that we forget its weight. Phelps was 10 years older but he’d won three consecutive 100m butterfly golds at the Olympics. This was akin to racing god. This was Usain Bolt two lanes down.
How do you beat such athletes, who are born to confident sporting nations? Phelps had Mark Spitz and Matt Biondi before him. Carlos Alcaraz has Rafael Nadal as Spanish evidence in the racket arts. Paths had been cleared for them, but not for Schooling. Sometimes harder than just coming first is to also be the first.

Joseph Schooling kissing his gold medal after winning the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. PHOTO: ST FILE
We see great athletes but rarely know them, for the mental territory they tread is foreign and the way they define success is not as simplistic as ours. Schooling, for instance, will tell you his greatest swim wasn’t even the 100m butterfly in Rio but two obscure 200m butterfly races before it.
One was in 2007 in Singapore and another in the NCAA. In both he was trailing badly, in both he barely won. In the 200m, he explained, “you go through an immense amount of pain”. Grit is what he asked from himself on those days and grit is what he found. Satisfaction, he’s telling us, is more complicated than just an Olympic medal.
The champion’s life is hard to condense, for it is a complex, painful journey made by imperfect, fascinating folk. Schooling, author of inspiring tales and also cautionary ones, gave us insight into his planet. He wore an easy grin but was combustible in training. Second-best as a philosophy didn’t appeal to him. His desire ran deep, his cockiness shone, and his complacency after he won was intriguing.

Joseph Schooling (right) posing with joint silver medallists (from left) Michael Phelps, Chad Le Clos and Laszlo Cseh at the 2016 Rio Olympics. PHOTO: REUTERS

In sport the chase is the fun, the victory a relief and then sometimes a void. Not everyone has the will for another depleting, four-year chase. Schooling taught us that we could win and this was enough. Someone will come one day to teach us the next lesson.
Nations bestow famous people with all manner of awards but Singaporeans gave Schooling the sweetest of gifts. Nothing to frame or pin on a lapel, but something more profound. They lined the streets to cheer him in 2016 and it was a collective voice of affection and approval.
In the end, why do we go to arenas? For wonder, of course. For that instant when a human finds his highest athletic expression. When he fights to overcome his frailties, is brave enough to believe he can dominate the world, and produces his very best when surrounded by the planet’s best.
Schooling offered us this wonder and in doing so left us something precious.
Footprints to walk in.


Alfrescian (Inf)
It was all downhill from the moment he won the Olympic gold medal.

‘My mistake was the complacency to think that this will last forever,’ says Joseph Schooling​

In an exclusive retirement interview, Joseph Schooling talks to Rohit Brijnath about the highs and lows of his career​


Before his announcement, Joseph Schooling sat down with The Straits Times for an exclusive, 84-minute conversation on a remarkable life. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Rohit Brijnath
Assistant Sports Editor

APR 02, 2024

The photograph in The New York Times was evocative. Water flying and an athlete screaming. The flag on the swimmer’s cap was of Singapore. The headline read “Somebody (His Name’s Joseph Schooling) Finally Beats Michael Phelps”.
It was Aug 12, 2016.
Before the Olympic 100m butterfly final, Joseph’s father, Colin, told him to “stun the world”. So he did. He broke the Olympic record and wrote a golden history for his land. As ESPN shouted, “How tiny Singapore rocked Rio”.
That was Joseph Schooling’s brilliant time. Now it has run out.
Of that night in Rio, Schooling says, it felt like “they were playing in my sandbox”. That sandbox is now forever shut. The swimmer who authored the greatest career in Singapore sport has retired at 28.
“If you dedicated your whole life to something,” he says, “stepping into another phase is both scary and exciting.”
Before his announcement, Schooling sat down with The Straits Times for an exclusive, 84-minute conversation on a remarkable life. This is a swimmer who was acutely ambitious, volatile at practice – “if one person doesn’t hold the same sort of mindset (to be the best), don’t be there” – won medals at every level (Olympic, world, Asian, Commonwealth), consumed cannabis overseas and never bettered his Olympic time.

Nothing was off the record. Not whether champions should hold themselves to a higher standard. Yes, he said. Not even the confusing years after he won Olympic gold, and form eluded him.
What happened?
“Complacency,” he bluntly says.

“My mistake was the complacency to think that this will last forever because I’m so far ahead. Add on ego, add on pride. Add on that, ‘I’m never going to be shut-down attitude’. That’s a recipe for complacency. That’s one of the lessons that I learnt.”

Love of water​

But this story begins with a toddler who used to run instinctively towards water. At four he was beating older kids, so “Uncle Vincent (Poon, his first coach) had those bigger kids put on fins. He had them swim half-a-lap ahead of me, held me back at the wall and asked me to chase them.
“I got so mad.”
He also got fast.
So fast that in a nation tuned to academia, a family bravely decided to invest in a child’s sporting talent. Colin and May Schooling sent Joseph to The Bolles School in Florida. He was 14, far away, but a testing environment polished his inner beast.

In the US, Schooling grew up. Ferocious in his appetite to win and full of “teenage angst”, he tested his mentor, coach Sergio Lopez. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
“I came in losing to all the seniors, kids five years ahead of me. Losing and losing and losing. And I just saw myself getting closer and closer and closer. And once I sunk my teeth in there, I wasn’t gonna let go.” He was chasing the best in the world and it often means one thing. “You’re going to be the best.”
With bodies half-submerged, so much of swimming is invisible. What made Schooling – height 1.84m, wingspan 1.93m – great was drive and feel.
“Feel,” he explains, “is the ability to close my eyes and know exactly how my body is positioned in the water. When I start pressing, and start catching that water with my fingers, I don’t need to open my eyes. I know where my body is and how and why my body is moving the way it is.”
Olympic golden boy Joseph Schooling retires from swimming
Schooling retires: Tributes pour in for Jo, who made us proud to be S'porean

A hard education​

Greatness requires sweat, wisdom and tough lessons. Before the 200m butterfly at the 2012 Olympics, Schooling was told his goggles and cap were not approved and so he couldn’t use them. He was 17 and rattled but a vital lesson was learnt.
“Anything can happen. Be ready for everything.”
In the US, Schooling grew up. Ferocious in his appetite to win and full of “teenage angst”, he tested his mentor, coach Sergio Lopez. “He had to absorb all this nonsense I threw at him, tantrums, being late to practice.”
After the 2012 goggles incident, Schooling had “a huge falling-out” with Lopez. It was just a teenager acting out. “I was just throwing everything negative I felt at him.” Until Lopez’s wife, Sandy, told Schooling that Lopez didn’t want to coach him any more. “That’s when I woke up. Like, whoa, I didn’t think it was that serious”.
It was a lesson about respect and Schooling responded beautifully. At the 2016 Olympics, even though he was coached then by Eddie Reese, at the University of Texas, he did something unusual.
“I grabbed Serge (then head coach of Singapore) and I said, we have this tradition. I want you to walk me to the ready room and he was shocked.” It was a pupil saying thank you to his guru.
Lopez and his coaches were vital, for they offered him more than practice sets. “A good coach,” he explains, “gives you that unwavering feeling that he’s going to run through a wall with you. Like, you’re going to war essentially.”

Hero of Rio​

In August 2016 almost no one in Singapore knew how good Schooling had become. Him versus Michael Phelps felt like an unequal battle. But we could not see his belief and his courage.
And we didn’t know that in his second year at college, to his own bewilderment, Reese whispered in his ear: “Jo, I don’t think you know how good you are. But I think it’s good that you don’t know how good you are”.
In the 100m freestyle, Schooling made the semis and emerged thinking, “Wow, that really hurt. I don’t know how this fly is gonna go”. But in the 100m butterfly heats he was another swimmer.
“Michael is next to me. And I felt like that was one of the easiest races I’d ever swum. Not even tired at all. Almost to the point where I could dictate what I wanted to do, but not only that, what everyone else does.”
Schooling’s 51.41 seconds was fastest in the heats. His 50.83 was fastest in the semis. “I’m thinking to myself, is this actually happening... I’m starting to realise that this is my race to lose tomorrow.”
He led the final at 50m and with 35m left he knew it was his. He finished first, slapped the water and was hugged by Phelps. In the stands his smiling mother held a Singapore flag.

Swimmer Joseph Schooling won gold in the men's 100m butterfly final at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. PHOTO: ST FILE

Fame and the aftermath​

No Singaporean had been where he was and so no Singaporean knew what it felt like. In 50.39 seconds Schooling had become a national icon and out of water he had to learn to keep his balance.
“(It was) overwhelming, for sure.”
He was lucky he had fine people around him for whom he was always just Jo. But still, fame is a foreign land and he had no guide. “I had to figure out a lot of things by myself.”
Schooling was still achieving things no Singaporean had – bronze at the 2017 world championships, two golds at the 2018 Asian Games – but he wasn’t as fast as he was. “Overconfident,” he flatly says of himself then. “Entitled, actually, would be the direct way to put it. I felt like I didn’t need to work as hard any more because I got to that level.”
His dad, Colin, wrote worried e-mails in all caps to Reese and, as Schooling says, “Eddie would just call him and say, ‘Colin, look, Jo’s sole mission on this planet was to win an Olympic gold medal’. And he emphasised ‘an’ Olympic medal. One... ‘(So) can you actually blame the kid for letting off some steam or taking his foot off the gas pedal after he’s accomplished his lifelong dream at 21’?”

Joseph Schooling during the men’s 4x100m medley relay final at the 18th Asian Games in Gelora Bung Karno Aquatic Centre, Jakarta, on Aug 24, 2018. PHOTO: ST FILE
And really that was it.
“Deep down,” says Schooling, “I accomplished what I wanted to.”
Maybe also Schooling never gave himself a break. He’d woken, swum, lifted, eaten, breathed, fought all his life with a single purpose. Olympic gold. Now he had it, now what? In hindsight, he says, “I was just sick and tired of it. I had almost two decades of non-stop (swimming) without giving my mind a rest.”
At one point after the Olympics, out of shape, anxious, facing Caeleb Dressel in the NCAA championships, he even called Phelps. “I was like, how do you deal with all the scrutiny? It almost makes you fall out of love with swimming.”
Phelps asked him, “Who do you swim for?” Schooling replied, “For myself, my parents and the people around me.” Exactly, replied Phelps. The point was the noisy critics in the stands, they didn’t matter. Neither did they have what Schooling owned, a piece of gold-plated metal on a ribbon which rested in a safe in his parents’ office.

Cannabis and conclusion​

The finest of champions trip. Phelps was caught drink driving. Serena Williams abused a lineswoman. Schooling had inspired schoolchildren, put aside meals to sign autographs, shared himself with the media, but then in 2022, a year after he finished 44th in his Olympic defence with a slow time of 53.12, he confessed to consuming cannabis overseas.
It was, he says, “embarrassing and humiliating”.
Years ago in a provocative Nike ad, the basketballer Charles Barkley growled: “Just because I dunk a basketball doesn’t mean I should raise your kids.” It’s an interesting argument on role models, but Schooling doesn’t duck responsibility.
“The way I want to look at it is, OK, you know what, this person actually looks up to athletes, looks up to me. And I should hold myself to higher standards as well.
“Is that tiring? Is that tough? Yeah, sometimes. Does it make me miserable? No... Make the best use of this platform and leave that legacy that you want to leave.”
We’re going to be more thankful to Schooling than we understand. For the great steps, the missteps and for opening up arguments again, as with national service.
“Defence is No. 1,” he says. “The next question is, can these two things coincide? Absolutely. I think it’s going to take a lot of work.”
He still swims, the water not his challenge any more but his refuge. The golf course pulls him, too, and so will work. “I am going into the VC (venture capital) space with two partners. We’re going to slice that up into three pillars: health and wellness, tech, and sustainability.”
But of course his legacy has to be connected to water and it’s his swim school. Not just teaching kids to be safe but knowing that confidence found in the water “will trickle down into every aspect of your life”.
The interview is winding down and later, outside this room at the Chinese Swimming Club, he’ll charm a middle-aged lady. A photo with Jo? Really? She beams. He smiles. All afternoon he’s talked, moving from forthright to vulnerable, and there’s time for one last question.
What has swimming given him?
“It’s given me the world, man.”


Alfrescian (Inf)
He is a proud member of the gangster school

‘We are not gangsters, we are ACS boys’ quote goes viral, inspires shirts and song​


Netizens designed T-shirts emblazoned with the quote, "We are not gangsters. We are ACS boys.” PHOTO: FACEBOOK
Ong Su Mann

MAR 11, 2024

SINGAPORE – Boys will be boys, it seems.
During a March 2 police raid at an Orchard Road KTV lounge where 14 men and 48 women were arrested over a four-day anti-crime operation targeting entertainment outlets and massage parlours, a man was found with an e-vaporiser and refused to provide his e-mail details when asked.
He was with a group of five other men in a private room, reported The Straits Times on March 8.
As officers quizzed him, one of the other male patrons raised his voice and said: “We are not gangsters. We are ACS boys.”
ACS stands for Anglo-Chinese School, and the quote has gone viral online after being highlighted on Reddit and elsewhere.
One Redditor commented: “This is the funniest thing I have seen this decade. They used ‘we are ACS boys’ as some kind of proof?”
Another said: “Was he trying to imply ‘my parents are rich and influential’? Why would anyone even say that in a situation he’s in? Sigh, there’s always that one friend.”

Netizens have come up with T-shirt designs emblazoned with the quote, which has inspired a song with the same title.
Others on social media also got in on the fun.
Local blogger and former ACS boy Lee Kin Mun, better known as mrbrown, took a dig at the saga in a video posted on social media.

Singaporean author Gwee Li Sui also wrote on Facebook: “How many ACS boys does it take to change a light bulb? None. We are not electricians. We are ACS boys.”

Among ACS’ notable alumni are President Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan, Olympic swimming champion Joseph Schooling and Mandopop star JJ Lin. THE NEW PAPER


Alfrescian (Inf)
give him a break…he won a freaking gold medal, by beating michael phelps…ze best iz yet 2 b :thumbsup::cool:

He has had his celebrity moments.
He was feted. praised, and rewarded handsomely financially.
He was forgiven for smoking cannabis.
He has been given enough breaks.


give him a break…he won a freaking gold medal, by beating michael phelps…ze best iz yet 2 b :thumbsup::cool:
true that. he had his best moments but it is over. whatever it is, he still achieved something no other sinkie can lay claim to so let's give credit where it's due.

Scrooball (clone)

He was like a firework. Shine bright but fade away too fast as well. He never regained the same standard since his Olympic gold. He couldn’t even make the cut for some Asian competitions.


AMDK father Juihu mother…trained & educated in US.

Only true SG bred top champion swimmer IMHO is Pat Chan.


He was like a firework. Shine bright but fade away too fast as well. He never regained the same standard since his Olympic gold. He couldn’t even make the cut for some Asian competitions.
At least shine for a while lah
He did his best effort and win Olympic by seizing right timing....

Many many JLB sinki only kbkp only...but very envy of Schooling achievement