29 Jan 2024 - 2 Feb 2024
One word summarizes this trip for us - friendship. Breaking the ice and making new friends who demonstrate warmth and kindness highlighted this trip. We met as strangers, and three hours later, we parted as friends.
The just concluded MacPherson - Life Journey Pickleball KL challenge is a testament to the phrase: Pickleball unites all.
Thanks to an invitation from our Kuala Lumpur friends, a group of 18 players from Singapore was hosted by the KL group of picklers for a friendly match on 30th January in an indoor complex of three air-conditioned courts.
Singaporeans are typically always looking distant but are gems once the ice is broken. Our Malaysian hosts in their typical gracious nature were most hospitable. Their generosity exceeded our expectations, and we could not have asked for a better host. Our hosts truly went the extra mile to ensure our stay was perfect, and for that, we are incredibly grateful.
An event of this nature takes time and effort to organize. To Yip, Mel, and their assistants, we extend a big thank you. Everything went off like clockwork according to schedule. A gold trophy was the target for the two competing teams, as well as the bragging rights. The three volunteer referees and all the ball pickers showed their professionalism throughout the three hours with no loss of concentration. Thank you for your thoughtful souvenir of a pickleball paddle key chain to remember this event.
The result could not have been any closer, with only one match separating the two teams. Sportsmanship is the winner on the day.
Lunch after the games at the Eu Yan Sang restaurant was a treat, much enjoyed by the 48 players.
USAP Rule seminar
Life Journey Pickleball - KL took this opportunity to invite John Ng (AFP Tournament Rules Advisor and USA Pickleball-trained referee), to conduct a USAP rules seminar for their players.
The purpose of the seminar was to gain a better understanding of the rules that govern the game. Appreciation of the rules serves three objectives :
1. Play the game with good sportsmanship as the rule book intended. Most on-court issues can be resolved between the players themselves without a referee. This is the current trend in most tournaments with referees only officiating in medal matches.
2. Improve our own game by knowing what we can do, or cannot do during a game. Thus gaining a competitive advantage over our opponents.
3. The seminar focuses on what should not occur, not on what is allowed. Conducting the seminar to include rules describing what is allowed will result in an unnecessarily lengthy session.
Feedback from the attendees was positive with the promise that they would spread the seminar contents to others so all would benefit from it.
Thanks once again to our Malaysian friends. Stay healthy till we meet again.
Article contributor: Alan Lew (member of Macpherson pickleball group, Singapore)
Photo credits: Lim Lijiao