I was at Ngee Ann Polytechnic for their Heroes Seminar earlier this month to share about Red Sports. At the end of one session, a Ngee Ann student came up to me. He said he used to play basketball for Hougang Secondary, and that he and his teammates felt immense pride every time they were featured on Red Sports. He said it made a difference to them.
That has been the reason why Red Sports has existed all these years — to say to everyone who plays for country, for club, and especially for school, “We see you.”
And we have heard clearly in reply, “We are here.”
We recognise our athletes because they are one of us, they are our friends and teammates, our brothers and sisters, our cousins and nephews, our sons and daughters.
And they play on courts and fields familiar to us in Toa Payoh and Yishun, in Tampines and in Bedok, in Clementi and in Jurong West. North, south, east and west they play, on this our little island in the sun.
And north, south, east and west the Red Crew go, to watch and shoot, to record both victories and also defeats, so that we can all remember together when we are a little older, and have left this time behind.
We remember because this is where we were born, this is where we grew up, this is where we live.
And Red Sports remembers with you.
Red Sports turns 5 today and so we thank you all for keeping us company all these years. Thanks for sharing your stories with us, for sending us hard-to-find fixtures, for updating the scores.
Thank you, most of all, for making us a part of your life.
Red Sports. Always Game.
The Red Crew would like to share their best memories from the past five years with you below. If you have a favourite memory of Red Sports, please feel free to share in the comments section below. : )
“Best memory: getting to know all the jokers in Red Sports and having them for company on and off the job …” — TAN JON HAN, photographer
“Best memory: seeing my photography skills improve from nothing. [It was either this or Bananagram lol.]” — VANESSA LIM, photographer
“One of the best memories is covering the Burnley Singapore tour but it doesn’t beat getting a thank you card from the 2010 SAJC soccer team for covering their A Div matches!” — KENNETH TAN, writer
“Best memory: to get interviewed, to see myself on the slider photos and to see my name in one of the paragraphs of the story here on Red Sports :)” — CHAN HUI MUI, writer
“It would have to be covering the AYG table tennis players and doing the “off-the-court”, post-competition story about them. Lets me know that as long as you have a passion for something (in their case it was playing table tennis), it can see you through trying times (even though you might suck at what you’re doing now, eventually it SHOULD be back on track).” — YVONNE YAP, writer
“My best memories would certainly have to be the friendships formed, both with the crew and the athletes. It is just amazing how two seemingly unrelated people, from different parts of the island, different schools and different background with no possible way to meet, can actually get acquainted with each other through sport and the site. Without the site, I wouldn’t have met many of the friends I have now. And on a lighter note, getting to shake my “idol” of 4 years hand for what seemed like eternity! :p” — LAI JUN WEI, photographer
“My best memory was getting to take pics with the pros at the Lion City Cup tournament. Being able to pick the brains of the seasoned photographers and asking them stuff like settings etc.” — ADRIAN TAN, photographer
“Mine is the one where I was on course and met an MOE officer, a former teacher. We talked about school sports. Then he asked how come I seem to know the scene. I said I help out with a sports website. He gasped, “You mean Red Sports?” When I said yes, he gasped again and said, in an adoring fanboy kind of way, “Do you know uncle Les?” So cute.” — DAWN YIP, writer
“I would say my “best memory” is of the way our stories have touched individuals’ lives — whether they are the subject of the story, people related to the story’s subject or otherwise. I had the sister of a top schoolboy athlete at the time whom I did a story on, come up to me, out of the blue, to thank me on his behalf for the story.
“The simple act of gratitude spoke to me deeply — it reinforced to me the idea that people cherish stories for a multitude of reasons each special to them. They could be a way to remember or a means to inspire or something else altogether. Whatever it is, it told me that the work Red Sports is doing is something that is of value to people.
“Another instance how I’ve seen our stories reaching into individuals’ lives is when I was at a community library during the interval between the morning and afternoon sessions of the National Inter-School Track and Field Championships. I was at a computer terminal and next to me was a schoolgirl who was using a computer herself. Curiosity made me look what website she was surfing and, to my pleasant surprise, she was on the Red Sports website. Furthermore, she was reading a story I had written of a softball match between two schools.
“The proximity at which I witnessed Red Sports’ infiltration into the lives of individuals as I did here strengthened my belief in the Red Sports mission — that local sports stories have a part to play in “strengthen[ing] our nation’s morale, culture and identity.” — COLIN TUNG, writer
“Well, being one of the earliest members of the crew, it is really been a joy to grow along with the site and the other crew members.
“Sporting event wise, I think the YOG has to be the best one. I had a great time pushing out article after article throughout that two weeks or so. I think I managed 3 articles per day or something like that which I feel quite proud of. It was also great to work and toil with the crew 🙂
“Best match ever still has to be the NYP vs NTU basketball IVP semifinal. Amazing match which define what sports is all about and it was certainly a pleasure covering it. Not to mention the only one doing so!
“Off the field, meeting local superstars and rubbing shoulders with the best of the local media has to be another great highlight. I remember Jan, Van and I got pictures with Andy Penders and Sheikh Haikel! That was really fun. locals also recognise Red Sports and the effort that we’ve done.
“Ultimately I think my best memory would be bonding as a crew over food and laughter at the RED HQ! Playing bananagram and laughing with each other. Feels like family more than anything really 🙂
:It all started at the National Stadium and till today, google lists an embarrassing photo of me kicking a football as the first post for my name! I’ve had the most fun throughout these four years! And hope for many more!” — KOH YIZHE (AKA SCREWS), writer
“My most memorable time in Red Sports? Why the YOG of course! Being part of the REDcrew tirelessly churning out reports of our young local athletes in action was one of the best times of my life. I had no complaints at all performing this labour of love for the sake of news.
For once, I knew what a Media Centre feels like, what a press conference feels like, and what free makan feels like. Plus rubbing shoulders with established local and foreign media there, it was absolutely fascinating stuff for me. Heck, I did not mind doing all this for free because I simply enjoyed what I was doing.
It was then I realised this was where I truly belonged. Right here in the media industry, at the forefront of the latest happenings.” — NOOR FARHAN, writer
“My best memory was using Bahasa Indonesia to ask questions of Simon Santoso during his quarter-finals loss to Lin Dan at the Singapore Badminton Open 2011. Watching him tie the rubber set 20-20 after being 20-15 down was one of the most intense experiences in my life and I have Red Sports to thank for that. The Singapore Open 2011 was the first time I ever stepped into a Media Centre and it was a surreal experience seeing all the sports journalists there.” — STEFANUS IAN, writer
“Red Sports has been amazing all this while, can’t seem to have time to help out nowadays but it will always be something close to heart. Thank you for a chance to cover YOG, it was truly a life changing experience. Favorite sporting moment would have to be the dramatic final victory for the Republic Poly floorball team over ITE at the POL-ITE games. That’s what local sports is about — passion and enthusiasm.” — WONG HONG YONG, writer
“One of the best memories I have had during my time in Red Sports was representing the media team in a friendly basketball game against several local celebrities, during the half-time intermission of a Singapore Slingers ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) match in December 2009, at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. Both sides met for a warm-up session two days before, and Allan Wu, rippling muscles and all, absolutely annihilated us with his superior fitness and athletic ability. We thought we were in for a hiding during the actual game, but Allan was surprisingly subdued, and couldn’t hit a shot.
Nor could anyone of us. With time running out, the score was 0-0 and heading towards a farcical ending when I stole the ball from Allan and ghosted in for an uncontested lay up. The stadium erupted in full voice, but all I could see were my crew mates in their distinct red t-shirts jumping out of their court-side seats and shrieking howls of approval. That turned out to be the game-winning basket, and my late-game heroics must have inspired the Slingers, who themselves scored the go-ahead basket with only 14 seconds to go!” — ERWIN “STATSMAN” WONG, writer
“My best memory, or should I say my memory of Red Sports is built on seeing what was once a dream become a reality. At Holland Village’s Yakun Kaya Toast on 1 April 2008 (not a joke), I met uncle Les for the first time and heard all about what Red Sports was doing for school sports and envisioned to do for the local sports scene.
“Red Sports was a 3, 4-man band then but in half a decade’s time, I would not have dreamt of meeting 30-40 young and talented volunteers burning their weekends and late-nights filing stories and editing photographs all in the name of a commitment to this vision. Then I saw before my eyes a man’s wild vision become and still becoming a reality, and made me believe in the potential of our local youths – on and off the pitch!” – JAN LIN, writer