PETALING JAYA: Malaysians woke up Wednesday morning in a celebratory mood after divers Pandelela Rinong and Cheong Jun Hoong bagged an Olympic silver medal in Brazil.
It was Malaysia’s first medal in the Rio Games.
An outpouring of national pride and support flooded The Star’s Facebook page following the divers’ second placing behind China in the women’s 10m platform synchro.
“Pingat pertama negara ! Bangga dengan kejayaan @Pandelela_R & Cheong Jun Hoong! Tahniah! #Rio2016 #MAS #Olympics (The country’s first medal! Proud of Pandalela & Cheong Jun Hoong’s achievements! Congratulations #Rio2016 #MAS #Olympics),” Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said on his Twitter account.
“Tahniah @Pandelela_R & JunHoong atas kemenangan pingat perak di @Rio2016_en. M’sia amat berbangga dgn kejayaan ini (Congratulations Pandalela & Jun Hoong on winning the silver medal at Rio 2016. Malaysia is very proud of your achievement,” Transport Minister and MCA president Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said.
Youth and Sports minister Khairy Jamaluddin also sent out his congratulations via Twitter shortly after the results announcement.
“Bravo Pandelela & JH for their sportswomanship spirit. A truly Malaysian spirit. You all deserve the medals,” said TauChong Khor.
“Good show girls! Giving Malaysians pride for the right reasons! God bless,” said Zaini Aridd.
“Well done. An amazing performance under pressing circumstances,” said Vasanthakumar Saminathan.
Loh Hor Leong said: “Four years ago at London 2012 she (Pandalela) brought home a bronze. Today they bring home a silver. Way to go girls! You make our country proud.”
Dharam Raj said: “Congratulations, proud of you for bringing honour to our country. God bless you both.”
“Congratulations and thank you for all your hard work and sacrifice. Keep it coming #teamMalaysia!” said Fazlina Leman.
Others were optimistic that the win may pave the way for Malaysia’s first gold medal.
“Congrats girls and well done but there is still a chance for anyone to make history by becoming the first ever Olympic gold medalist for our nation. Go Malaysians, impossible is nothing!,” said Facebook user Tagem Namza.
Even neighboring countries shared in Malaysia’s Olympic joy.
“Huge congrats to our closest neighbour & friend, Malaysia ! What a shining moment!” said Singaporean commenter Lim Mui Khim.
Pandelela-Jun Hoong scored a total of 344.34 points after five dives at the Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre.
Lying in third place after the third dive, the Malaysian pair upped the ante to finish strongly behind China’s Chen Roulin-Liu Huixia who won the gold medal with 354.00 total. Canada’s Meaghan Benfeito-Roseline Filion settled for bronze with 336.18.