ALL SET FOR GUANGZHOU: Famemas members, sponsor and athletes.
KLANG: "Performers without an audience, are nothing," says David Foo, deputy chairman of Famemas — short for Famous Malaysia — at the launch of the Famemas Club Guangzhou Asian Games here on Saturday.
The self-funded body recognised by the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) aims to provide vocal and moral support to Malaysian athletes participating in foreign meets by being physically present to cheer and support them.
Its 600 members are sports enthusiasts who, rather than rooting for the best at a particular sport, choose to lend their support to local athletes in meets around the world.
Twenty members of Famemas will be at the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, from Nov 20 to 28, shuttling from stadium to stadium to cheer local athletes in badminton, squash, hockey, athletics, karate, rhythmic gymnastics, sepak takraw, soccer, archery, bowling and diving.
They will cover up to four sports per day, in accordance with the wishes of the Malaysian chef-de-mission and the Malaysian Asian Games secretariat in China.
"Even for events where we do not get into the stadiums to cheer our heroes, we will still be in public areas in the proximity to foster friendship with fans from other countries and make our presence felt in promoting Malaysia," said Famemas chairman Lee Hui Seng, adding that this was a form of 'national service' to the country, during his address to members and sponsors.
Also present was hurdler Noraseela Mohd Khalid who officiated at the launch.
Noraseela, who will be participating in the 16th Asian Games, said morale support was essential to an athlete's morale.
"I love noise. The more noise there is, the better I perform. To have the support of fellow Malaysians in a foreign meet is important. The athlete doesn't feel so alone despite the overwhelming support for the other athletes on their home ground. I am looking forward to seeing Famemas members in Guangzhou."
Famemas member Mansor Abdul Khoni, said: "We have to support Malaysia to the very end, win or lose, whether it costs us or not. I have been supporting Malaysian sports since 1987. This is one of the ways we can show love and loyalty to our country."
The fan club invites all patriotic and sports-loving Malaysians to join its ranks, and Malaysians residing in Guangzhou as well as Malaysian embassy staff in giving a cheer to spur the athletes in the Asian Games