News and views from an unique perspective

Majority of Singaporeans not proud of bronze medal won by China-born Feng Tianwei

Posted by temasektimes on August 2, 2012

Despite the tonnes of propaganda churned out by the state media day after day to glorify the bronze medal won by China-born Feng Tianwei at the London Olympics, the majority of Singaporeans are not proud of her achievements.

In an online poll conducted by Yahoo News, 77 percent of some 17,227 respondents polled say that they are not proud of a foreign import winning a medal at the Olympics.

Under the Multi-Million Dollars Award Programme, Feng is expected to pocket a cool S$200,000 after returning S$50,000 to the Singapore table-tennis association.

An increasing number of Singaporeans are questioning if Feng will stay in Singapore for good to contribute to the nation with many similar foreign talents like her ditching Singapore after making a quick buck here, among them footballer Egmar Goncalves, table-tennis player Zhang Xueling and shot putter Dong Enxin.

Feng was widely criticized by Singaporeans for throwing flowers at cheering PRC fans after her victory over Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa, a clear sign that she has not forgotten her motherland which is China and not Singapore.



66 Responses to “Majority of Singaporeans not proud of bronze medal won by China-born Feng Tianwei”

  1. SINYoobi said

    Overpriced made in China medal. FTW worked extremely hard for the S$250k reward. Must thank our government for making these foreign imports millionaires.

    • Iai said

      LIke a tin can car, scratch the surface, it shows another material. Dumb policy as we have witnessed and will witness where these imports’ loyalty lie. Why not buy over swimmer Ye? Sure many golds to come!

  2. Daniel said

    Is she a Singaporean ? She is a PRC who happens to be playing for Team Singapore.

  3. Sorry, not a new story said

    This sort of thing happens in every country. Western countries accept sportspeople from China all the time.

    I agree, it’s best if the person is home grown. If Feng Tianwei was born and raised in Singapore, that’d be very different.

    But we have to face reality that what Singapore did importing sports people isn’t something special, and Singapore will almost never produce medal level athletes because the culture here isn’t right for it- all the SG Chinese and Indians want their kids to study study study, and the Malays aren’t into long term discipline for sports training.

    • Victor said

      This reflects on the Government preference to having quick fix solutions rather than longer term sustainable ones. The money spent on these foreigners could be used to groom Singaporeans which will be a more sustainable solution.

    • Zam said

      Singapore does not have any culture

    • KCLeong said

      The question we need to ask ourselves whether the sports foreign talent program which was primarily started with the aim to nuture local talent has succedeed or not. The table tennis foreign talent scheme was started nearly 13 years back (in 1999) and for this Olympics in 2012 there is not one Singapore born player in the team of 6 (mens and womens table Tennis Teams) and this speaks for itself. We need to field local born players and not just depending on foreign imports if we are sincere in getting our local born ttalent to grow.

    • Sispecjo said

      Thats pretty racist. Its akin to saying that the Chinese here are too busy worshipping wealth and are even intent to sleeping with other people to clinch deals to bother about sports and that the Malays here are not getting enough support in their sports development. Im sure its not like that right?

      Please be mindful.of what u say and look away from the tinted glasses you look.through.

  4. NaBey said

    What is our identity? Should we happy or not happy?
    Tan Liang Howe, 1960 silver medalist, do we feel proud about him? He was from Shantou china. At that era, there is no FT. Most are called Labourer. He did not receive any $ for his achievement. He worked SSC, $1k salary. 2010 his wife got cancer and nobody helped except a donor donated $100k.
    FTW, TLH both from China. Both won medal. Should we or not be happy?
    Question is: where are Spore aborigin?
    Most of us, our roots came from China, Malaysia, Indonesia, etc. Only that Lion and some villagers that Sang nila Utama saw was aborigins?
    Tao Li, I respect her. Despite of her country of origin, she speak very good english/singlish now. I bet she is the only one in her cohorts who knows how to sing national anthem in full. This is what I expect to see in FT turn to Citizen instead of throwing bouquets to your country of origin.

  5. SuSu said

    We should not pay her the $200k. Send her back to China after this. She cannot even speak a word of English during the interview. Save the money to develop our local talent.

  6. noeyesee said

    一流薪金!九流功工!no e丫e see

  7. Carisse said

    Truth is, I don’t feel proud that she’s our athlete at all. She may have won, but she is a true-blood Chinese national who was not born nor raised in Singapore. She’s nothing more than a “paid athlete” to win for Singapore.

  8. jaded said

    why stop at PRC? can we import indian, pinoy athletes too? the more the merrier right?

    • surething said

      We don’t specifically target PRC athletes only FYI. The reason we don’t see indian and pinoy athletes is because they cannot make it. Do you see those countries in the Olympics medal standings?? Any world class athlete that is willing to come fight for SGP we sure would welcome – whether from PRC or Japan or USA.

    • oldguard said

      I think our gahmen want a quik fix, start bringing those overage atheles, sure can win alot of medals for SEA games, ASIA games and Commonwealth Games.

  9. Musing said

    It’s hard to feel proud as a nation for the win by all these mercenaries players for they will eventually return to their own country.

    For the Singaporeans who think we are nitpicking, they really dont understand the term “Homegrown talent”.Sure, many countries import PRC players but that is not the point. Most of these countries have other home grown talents as well while ours are dominated by mercenaries. I would be fine if there is a historical track record that these foreign imported players will stay on, form their own roots in Singapore and become true blue Singaporeans but time and time again, we see many of these players marry PRC and retire back to PRC. If more stay on behind and prove their loyalty, perhaps there will be less cynics and less inclined believed all these imported players are only concerned about making their individual presence on the world stage than really about bringing pride and honor to Singapore.

    While I have nothing to be proud of the win, I commend her own individual effort to get where she is. Afterall, it is through sheer hardwork that she won on her own merit and we should not be a wet blanket to her achievement. However, respecting her win as an individual sportsperson is different from respecting the win as a national win.

    I dont understand why Singapore govt is soooo desperate to win a medal in Olympics. So what if we never win anything? So what if we are destined to watch our neighbors win the medals even if our own talents gave it their all? Does it matter that much? End of it all, it’s about a nation’s pride to produce a homegrown win who achieve something against all odds. It’s not about the pride of just winning. Winning medals means nothing to me as a Singaporean if I cannot relate to the player at all.

  10. kimmy said

    Actually it could be a case where Feng was merely throwing flowers to all her supporters in the arena and esp those who are nearest to her…. and not deliberately to PRCs…

  11. Invictus said

    PAP should take a long hard look on their policy. A Yahoo poll of size of 17,000 Singaporeans shows that this is not sentiments of a noisy MINORITY.
    Shameful to see how she throw the garland of flowers to fans bearing the PRc flags, and not to her country SINGAPORE. Why should I be proud of her ?!

    • Daft Peasant said

      i work with prc…..everyday i see LOTS of prc…..students….workers…..PRs…..New Citizens……. in their heart and mind, singapore WILL NEVER BE A HOME….its just a place to live and a place to earn money bcos of the strong currency……so end of the fucking day, THEY WILL STILL GO BACK TO CHINA……

      Ever wonder why the hongkongers call them: Locusts??

  12. hangTenlah said

    Crazy people in charge with crazy ideas!Feng is the one who can make those crazy pigs looks real stupid and retarded. Zhong Guo B jia you!This link was on

    @Related: Surprising value of Olympic medals
    Kitadai won a bronze medal in the 60-kilogram judo competition on Saturday in London and celebrated by taking it everywhere. That included the shower. He didn’t want to get the medal wet because, duh, only an idiot would bring his medal into the shower and let water get on it, so he bit it between his teeth. That’s when the purple strap snapped and caused the bronze disc to crash to the ground. It was left with a small dent.
    The Brazilian Olympic Committee formally requested a new medal after the incident. Despite the fact that it had no obligation to do so, the IOC will give him one, according to a report in Globo Esporte . It’s no sweat off their backs: The medal only contains $4.71 worth of metal.
    For more :-

  13. Invictus said

    Great sporting achievement is suppose to unite and galvanize the nation, create a common bond and sense of pride. From the poll, it’s clear that the bronze Olympic medal fail to do exactly this, instead it widens the debate of Singaporean vs FT and our fast-track policy of buying success. The Sports Chief has succeed in her agenda in getting success, but it is a hollow glory with Singaporeans.

  14. Many are laughing at Sinkaporens.

  15. Bao Ching Tian said

    The unhappiness over FTW’s win is not about FTW herself, but about the PAP’s relentless pursuit of an Olympic medal at all costs – the `die-die must win’ attitude. Sports is not about winning all the time. The Olympics are no different. The spirit of participation and comradeship forged are more important than the medals won. I am more proud of a team of true-blue native born Singaporean athletes who have trained hard for the Olympics, tried their best but returned home empty handed than a foreign-import who was paid to win a medal.

  16. Geoff said

    Well let me see. Singaporeans don’t think much of her win. The PRC crowd cheers her. If you were FTW where would you throw your flowers ?

  17. vgjvh said

    Were Singaporeans there to cheer for her? Were they there for her to throw flowers to?

    I think the above questions are moot. For the sincerity in being one of us, is to show us that you stand with us even as we ponder your loyalties. Should she have waved and smiled in simple sportsmanship to the Chinese, but show off the Singapore flag proudly, I believe she would have gained instant acceptance into our folds.

    For throwing flowers to the Chinese, she has all but lost our faith.

    Thank you for the game. Congratulations on the medal. But you are not one of us, yet. Majulah Singapura.

  18. Tong said

    Interestingly, how did Temasek Times derived at the “majority” of Singaporeans not proud of bronze medal won by FTW? I mean, can the bunch of born-losers and whiners who are highly capable of shitting through their mouth here represent the “majority” of Singaporeans?

    • lima said

      Well because Temasek Times is a xenophobic forum (a bit like daily mail in UK) run by some doctors who hate FTs, especially those from China.

  19. joun lee said

    Why are all the people complaining about Tianwei being a FT. Tan Howe Liang is also a FT during his time. He was born in China!! Those days, we all celebrated Howe Liang’s win. We did not care where he came from so long he won for Singapore.

    Mod’s note:

    Tan How Liang came to Singapore when he was a child and settled down here. Feng Tianwei – just look at her Han Chinese name, doesn’t even sound Singaporean at all. It’s not where you are born, but the number of years you spent in Singapore and how integrated you are. Get it?

  20. Ron said

    I am proud of Feng. The medal record belongs to Singapore and not China. Within China, the competition is so fierce that Fend may not have made it to the Olympics. She is a Singaporean legally now and that is what matters.

    Many Singaporeans migrate overseas each year. Others migrate in. So, what does it matter whether Feng decide to migrate again? People are just narrow minded and will hit out at any thing that is not local born. There are plenty of dispirited Singaporeans and it will not help them win any international honors with such kind of attitude.

  21. Government has childish thinking said

    Government has childish thinking

    Only Childish thinking will be proud of it. Singapore government has childish thinking.

  22. xiaofamilies said

    Get foreigner (or China in this case) to train Singaporean and Singaporean go and get the medal

    Follow what China had done rightly. China ask Russia to train their astronauts, and Chinese will be the astronauts for their space ship and not the Russian.

  23. Childish and Ego thinking is not good for nation said

    Childish and Ego thinking is not good for nation

    Childish and Ethinking person will feel proud for the medal won by “non native Singaporean”

    • lookinthemirror said

      SMLJ. Stop talking rubbish. You sound like you don’t even know what it means to compete, much less to win in anything.

  24. Disgusted Singaporean said

    A leopard can’t change its spots. China-born and bred will always be China-born bred. Fact is fact, no one can change it.

  25. True BLUE Sinkie said

    Singapore is like a piece of cake. To decorate the cake, we need to put alot of beautiful stuff on top of it such as icing, designs, candles, etc. Ultimately when that decorative layer is peeled off, we are left with that piece of plain dough. We bring in foreign sports men and woman to decorate Singapore. Yes, it looks nice temporarily of course. We may have the form, but we just dont have the substance. It’s the same as our bunch of cabinet ministers. We pay them millions and and we have a whole lot of cabinet millionaire minsters who do nothing but talk cock in parliament.

  26. enough said

    i will never be proud of her for she is not amongst one of us singaporean

    she is a prc, she will be a prc and die a prc

    she is just here because our slly pigs offered her millions

    cant blame her

  27. Ding said

    when Feng played against Ding,My heart goes to DIng,who knows that a S$1 miliion carrot is dangling for Feng.She could have throw the match for 50/50 or she could even have the S$1 million to herself had she left to fly the singapore flag.But she chose none ,but sportmanship to fly the china flag.Well done,Ding.You have done Singaporeans proud.

    • oldguard said

      How do you know, since you called yourself Ding, you must be another ah tiong, F you

      • Ding said

        Hey old man,I am a local seng and i prefer ding than dong can? My tax contribution goes to part of the S$1 million carrot.So go get a old log and f you self with,if you wish !

  28. oldguard said

    WTF, with all the allowance and prize money, we can take care of our own sportman and sportwoman. There are many countries with less than our population still bring back medal. What so proud about China import, pui.

  29. oldguard said

    Gahmen should look at sports that require only skill like shooting, archery, sailing, shooting, bowling, boxing, martial art etc. You want suggestion, train those boys and girls from the reformative traning center who like to fight to take up boxing. Many of our sports boys and girls cannot venture into sports bcos parents are afraid that they will be left out should they not succeed in sports. So gahmen should allay the fear to the parents who have children with potential.
    Provide allowance for transportation, meals, tuition fees etc. Trained only true bred Singaporean.
    Start importing coaches and not players.
    Look at archery, US using Korean coach, same goes with Mexico. Malaysia badminton also use foreign coaches. I think the IOC should ban foreign import from particpating.
    Singapore gahmen wake up, nobody is happy with the bronze won by China import.

  30. Fed Up Singaporean said

    I would rather all native born Singaporeans enter then Olympics and win NOTHING. Then a team of FOREIGN TALENTS BOUGHT BY MONEY solely for winning.

  31. Paddler said

    Compared to 10 years ago, inter-school table tennis matches with native Singaporean competitors are played at a much higher level, all thanks to the stimulation from the China players and coaches at all levels.

    Sure, the top tier of Singaporean paddlers are no way near Olympics standards as yet – even when they are so much better than 10 years ago.

    It will take decades to build a successful culture of attracting better local talents, maximizing each of their potentials and adapting the methods of inculcating mental resilience which is especially critical in this sport to the local settings.

    The day when S’pore can finally produce a player of such standards by herself, remember to retract your malicious words and give thanks as appropriate.

  32. Allan said

    If you would look from her perspective, how has Singaporeans made her feel welcome with our comments and judgement? It could be her family and friends who travelled all the way to support her. If I were me playing and my family was there, I would show some appreciation to my loved ones regardless of which country they are in.

    I say, rather than just looking at our friends from China and condemning them, see ourselves and check how have we behave as Singaporeans and if we made this place worth living in? Have you hung your Singapore flag yet?

    We may disagree about and with the government, but it is the the country and the people I love. Therefore, I hung my flag, not just on my flat, but my car as well…

  33. Wanderer said

    Stop wasting money on these mercenary foreign talents and spend the $ on improving the sport facilities here! Some of the toilets in swimming pools are like pigsties! And up to now Singapore doesn’t even have a Velodrome, but keep throwing money at overpaid, spoiled soccer players who couldn’t defeat a fourth division team.

  34. Cute said

    Sorry, I really don’t feel proud at all instead felt unhappy she win the money which pay by Singapore.

  35. NoBrain said


  36. Bao Ching Tian said

    Many countries import China atheletes to play for them in the Olympics. However, their citizens do not grumble or complain about their China imports unlike Singaporeans. Why? It is because PRC nationals do not compete directly with their citizens for jobs, housing, schools and other amenities. Most PRC immigrants to Western countries are involved in family-run Chinese restaurant or sundry shop business and do not take away jobs meant for locals. The vitriol against FTW is not because of FTW herself but rather an indirect expression of the underlying flawed immigration policy of allowing too many PRC nationals to enter and work in Singapore and compete with Singaporeans. The Ferrari and Sun Xu incidents further fuelled the anti-PRC sentiments. Therefore, when the media and PAP leaders continue to praise and congratulate FTW, it is seen by Singaporeans as further proof of their pro-PRC immigration policy

    • sogood said

      You speak the truth. I support FTW, but certainly not the current policy of allowing the flood of lowly skilled foreigners to enter.

  37. whylikethat said

    Don’t be so negative. Look at Jing Junhong who came as foreign talent, now she is the Singapore Women’s team head coach. These chinese players like JJH,LJW,FTW come here, they play for our country, and they continue to be loyal to us. What’s the problem? I am proud of FTW’s bronze. It certainly is a very high achievement. You think our sports body would offer a sports scholarship to any china kid?? They have to prove themselves first in china (backup chinese national team level). That in itself is a very high hurdle to reach. Any Singaporean is welcome to compete for the same funding. But don’t ask for funding BEFORE you prove yourself to have world-class potential.

    • ketua67 said

      JJH is married to a local Sg National TT player, hence she stays.

      Look at LJW, married to PRC, gave birth in PRC, trains in PRC, and join back Sg team only when there’s a comp.

      Come on, get real, between the imports and SSC is nothing but mere business dealing. If one is not up to performance during probation, then one will be returned to China. It happened before to at least 2 throwers.
      Not to mention, some have returned to their native countries, dumping the pink IC into the bin.

      What has the >50 imports done for Sg so far? What achievement we have out of so many imports?
      Do you know that there’s even a women basket ball team and Hockey team of imports?

      In a ranking exercise, FTW ranks 11th, just out of the top 10 to be in China A-team. And even in A-team, only few gets to represent China. To FTW, in Sg she’ll be anchor player, lots of exposures, and many monetary reward opportunities.

      It is exactly like you say, Sg brought in selectively talent. That’s exactly the point we don’t feel comfortable.
      If one is migrated here, then pick up the sports from zero, excel and represent Sg + able to integrate, then we will be sure to be very receptive.

  38. Follow only what China had done right! said

    Follow only what China had done right!

    Follow what China had done rightly. China ask Russia to train their astronauts, and Chinese will be the astronauts for their space ship and not the Russian.

    Get foreigner (or China in this case) to train Singaporean and Singaporean go and get the medal

    • sotong said

      Eh china has 1 billion people. From there they choose top 1000 kids to train as table tennis future stars. That is 1 in a million. Of those 1000, only maybe 20 make it as world-class. Now Singapore with only 4 million people, how to use the same strategy as China or any other large country? We are resource poor and talent poor (due to small population). We need to import talent, there is no doubt. Otherwise, be prepared to lose in sports, lose in economy and lose in everything else. The problem now is how we define foreign talent. Feng Tian Wei is rightfully a foreign talent, and should be appreciated. There are only a few Feng Tian Wei, Jing Junhong, Li Jiawei calibre of people, whether in sports or equivalent elsewhere, and welcoming them to singapore wouldn’t affect your livelihood. But now we have 0.5-2million immigrants from out of nowhere… clearly most of them are not talent and sometimes are even substandard to the average singaporean. So yes we should raise our immigration standards, but we must always open our doors to world-class people of all fields.

  39. aaaaa said

    Talk so much. Go Olympic LA… nabeh.zzz Pui

  40. Proud Singaporean? said

    Just overheard a conversation by a big group of senior citizens (about 20 of them) at a heartland coffeeshop:
    Singapore won a bronze medal in the Olympic!
    Hokkien: ” 拿别人的屁股皮做脸皮!” – All laughing…… sigh! 😦

  41. President of Nasi Brani said

    Are Foreign Imported athlete contributing to our economy?

  42. Lun said

    very very sad I am not proud of feng tian wei. I am proud of her if she gives back the 200k to contribute to singapore economy

  43. Neutral said

    I think the emphasis is totally not spot on. Saying that sports FT can help raise the standard of local talent is like saying S’pore can produce a local world-class sprinter if it can get Usain Bolt to train with the local sprinters, or saying local football standard can be better if S-league clubs get to play with Barcelona in their training sessions. Flawed logic.

    If Singapore wants to groom world class athletes, it needs to provide all the sound infrastructure and a conducive and supporting environment. Examples include the physical structures, financial support, training, food, nutrition, sports psychology etc. Essentially, there needs to be an incentive to locals to pursue a professional career in sports – and there needs to be more action to back up the words.

    Be it sports, jobs, education, housing, casinos, anything to do with FT – all say it is for the good of locals one way or another. Well done.

  44. Sg native & au PR said

    I am proud of myself to be a FT in au.
    I am not proud of Feng and her medal.
    Heard that au immigration dept has recently cancelled residency visa of a handful of PRCs in au, they have to leave au within 1 mth, due to they still failed their English despite living and staying in au for past 4 yrs. Do we see this in sg?

  45. JDIMU124 said

    For the amount of money spend on this foreign talent, pls spend it on local development. MOE have to take the blame first than followed by other ministries. In SPORE, when comes to sports, it’s all talk no action. If only MOE can go down to ground level to see on how schools are running the relevant sports. The amount of pressure the kids go through. In short, SPORE has become “NATO” when come to sports.

  46. […] 1.temasektimes, 2 August 2012. Majority of Singaporeans not proud of bronze medal won by China-born Feng Tianwei. Retrieved from:… […]

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