Eddy Choong

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This is a Chinese name; the family name is Choong and Ewe is a generation name.
Eddy Choong
Personal information
Birth name Choong Ewe Beng
Country Malaya
Malaysia
Born (1930-05-29)29 May 1930
Penang, British Malaya (now Malaysia)
Died 28 January 2013(2013-01-28) (aged 82)
George Town, Penang, Malaysia
Height 1.62 m (5 ft 4 in)
Event Men's singles, men's and mixed doubles
Eddy Choong
Traditional Chinese 莊友明
Simplified Chinese 庄友明

Choong Ewe Beng (29 May 1930 – 28 January 2013) was a Malaysian badminton player. He was David Choong's brother and they played men's doubles together.

Early life[edit]

Choong Ewe Beng, also known as Eddy, was a Chinese Malaysian born on May 29, 1930. He was the third son of a wealthy family in Penang. His parents were Datuk Choong Eng Hai and Datin Ho Guat Im.

Choong first went to primary and secondary school in Penang before moving to England at the turn of the 1950s to study law and medicine. His passion for the sport quickly eclipsed his studies and Eddy later said his studies were “long forgotten”.[1]

Career[edit]

Measuring at 1.62 metres (5 ft 4 in), Eddy was smaller than most of his European competitors but he made up for the height difference with endless energy[citation needed] and amazing acrobatic jumps[citation needed] that triggered a running gag about Eddy hiding springs in his shoes. Eddy was considered to be one of the first athletes to do a jump smash. His trademark shot was known as the “Airborne Kill”.[citation needed]

He won hundreds of regional titles and over 65 international titles in all three disciplines from 1949 to 1966. Eddy won many of these titles partnering his brother, David Choong, and his cousin, Amy Choong. Thirty of his international titles were gained from 1951 to 1953.[citation needed]

Noted for his quickness, tenacity, and stamina,[citation needed] Choong won men's the singles at the All England Open Badminton Championships four times between 1953 and 1957 when it was considered the unofficial world championship of the sport. He also reached the All-England singles final in 1952 and 1955 and won the men's doubles with his brother in 1951, 1952, and 1953.[2] He was a member of the 1955 Malayan Thomas Cup (men's international) team which retained the world team championship, and the 1958 team which surrendered the title to Indonesia[3]

Racial issues[edit]

Eddy was also a strong promoter of racial equality. Partially due to bad experiences during his childhood, Eddy was sensitive to racial issues. Eddy saw his performances in badminton as a way of showing that all races can be equally good at sport.[citation needed]

At the 1956 All England, he refused to attend the traditional celebration dinner because he felt the organisers treated him unfairly due to racial discrimination. On another occasion, Jørn Skaarup of Denmark gave away a match to Choong in which he felt the Malaysian was treated unfairly. Skaarup earned Choong’s respect and friendship with his fair play.[citation needed]

Achievements[edit]

Rank Event Date Tournament
All England Open Badminton Championships
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
1953, 1954, 1956, 1957
1951, 1952, 1953
All England
2 Men's singles
Men's doubles
1952, 1955
1954, 1955, 1957
All England
Open Championships
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
Mixed doubles
1953
1953
1953
Denmark Open
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
Mixed doubles
1954, 1955, 1957
1955, 1957
1957
Dutch Open
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
Mixed doubles
1952, 1953
1952, 1953
1951, 1952, 1953
French Open
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
1955, 1956, 1957
1955, 1957
German Open
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
Mixed doubles
1951, 1952, 1953, 1957
1952, 1953
1951, 1953
Irish International
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
Mixed doubles
1957, 1960
1966
1949, 1963
Malaysia Open
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
1954
1954
Norwegian International
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
1951, 1953, 1957
1951, 1952, 1953, 1957
Scottish Open
1 Men's doubles 1966 Singapore Open
1 Men's singles 1954 US Open
1 Men's singles
Men's doubles
1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1956
1950, 1954
Wimbledon International

Awards[edit]

In 1994, Eddy won the Herbert Scheele award and was inducted into the IBF Hall of Fame in 1997.[4]

Eddy made such an influence on the game that the IBF named an award after him: The Eddie Choong Player of the Year. This award was given to players who achieved exceptional results during a given year. Peter Gade was the first player to win this award in 1998. In 2008, the award was renamed the Eddie Choong Most Promising Player of the Year and given to the player who showed to be the most promising during a calendar year.[citation needed]

After retirement[edit]

Eddy settled in his native Penang for his retirement. After badminton, he bred dogs and raced fast cars and go-karts. He was a good driver and made a name for himself in motor racing after winning many titles from 1967 to 1982.[citation needed] Eddy was also the chairman of the Hock Hin Brothers Group which was his family business in real estate and housing development. Additionally, Eddy was involved at a high level in kennel associations in Malaysia.

In 1995, Eddy became the vice-president of the Penang Badminton Association and chairman of the Badminton Association of Malaysia Technical Advisory Panel. He focused on developing badminton in his native Penang. Choong used his own money to convert a family factory into Penang’s first indoor badminton stadium. He later invested 1.5 million MYR to build the Penang International Badminton Hall. It opened in 1992.

Personal life[edit]

In 1959, Eddy married Maggie Thean Sun Lin. Together, they had 4 sons – Finn, Lionel, Antonio and Jorgen. His eldest son, Finn, and third son, Jorgen, were named after Eddy’s longtime badminton rivals and friends, Finn Kobero and Jorgen Hamergard Hansan, respectively.[citation needed]

Death[edit]

Eddy died in January 2013 at the age of 82 years old.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Interview with Eddy Choong". Retrieved 2016-06-29. 
  2. ^ Herbert Scheele ed., The International Badminton Federation Handbook for 1971 (Canterbury, Kent, England: J. A. Jennings Ltd., 1971) 163.
  3. ^ Scheele, 75, 76, 84.
  4. ^ "BWF Hall of fame members". 

Sources[edit]

  • Eddy Choong - MSN Encarta (Archived 2009-10-31)
  • Eddy Choong, Fred Brundle: Badminton. Foyles Handbooks, London, Foyle, 1955
  • Eddy Choong, Fred Brundle: The Phoenix Book of Badminton – Its history, the development of the shuttlecock, the diversity of style and tactics, and the badminton world of today, London, Phoenix Sports Books, 1956