SEREMBAN – Tonight will decide who gets the mother of all gold medals at the 2017 Kuala Lumpur SEA Games (KL2017) at the football final between Malaysia and Thailand.
N. Thanabalan’s mother, V. Thiru Sundari, 52, said when she was watching the match between Malaysia and Indonesia on Saturday (Aug 26), she was nervous when the opponents frequently pressured the Malaysian defence area.
“When the goal was scored, I did not know that my son had sent the ball into the opposition’s net until several minutes later when the stadium was filled with shouts of ‘Thanabalan-Thanabalan’.
“He is not my son, he is the son of Malaysia because the goal produced was not due to his efforts alone but due to the cooperation of the whole Malaysian team,” she told Bernama during a visit to their house, here today.
S. Nadarajah, 56, the father of N.Thanabalan, played an important role in the career of the national hero as he was responsible in unearthing the footballer’s talent, and training him from young every week at the field of Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Tamil, Sungai Gadut, near here.
Although Nadarajah could not be present at the stadium tonight for the final match, he would always give his undivided support to his son.
He and the family would watch Thanabalan’s performance via television at home.
Nadarajah was paralysed from the chest downwards since April 2013 when the motorcycle he was riding was knocked down from behind by a car while going to work in Kuala Lumpur.
“I have been paralysed for five years and my son had entered into a contract with the Negri Sembilan football team to assist me in terms of medical costs before Thanabalan was loaned to the Felcra FC.
“Although our son is busy with his football training, he has never neglected his family, and he is also the source of my strength and Thanabalan is bearing the burden of family responsibility more than myself,” he said.
Nadarajah said his eldest son had now become the head of the family and that Thanabalan was willing to commute from his training place to Seremban, in order to look after the welfare of the family.
He said that since Thanabalan became the head of the family, his son would bear all the necessary costs such as food, electricity bills, and medical bills besides looking after his two younger siblings, Kheeteeswaran, 19 and Keerthikaa, 13.
“I believe Malaysia will win the final match against Thailand with a score of 2-1 and I don’t care who scores the goals as long as Malaysia can grab the gold medal,” he said.
Malaysia qualified for the final through the sensational goal in the last minutes of the game, where national hero N. Thanabalan headed in the penalty corner taken by Muhammad Nor Azam Abdul Azih in the 87th minute. – BERNAMA