Malaysia to match Olympic gold medal with 12.5kg gold bar
A Malaysian gold mining tycoon has offered a 12.5-kilogram gold bar worth more than half a million dollars for anybody in the country’s badminton team who can win an Olympic gold medal.
Andrew Kam, a badminton enthusiast who owns a gold mine in the eastern state of Pahang, made the offer Tuesday in a meeting with the Malaysian badminton team in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur, local media reported Wednesday.
The offer was made as an apparent bid to boost the morale of the country’s badminton team whose top player Lee Chong Wei suffered from an injury in a previous tournament.
Lee, the former world’s top-ranked badminton player, was once considered as the Olympic player who could bring the first gold medal for Malaysia.
Lee would still be leading the Malaysia badminton team in the London Olympics, but there has been a serious doubt about his form and capability to win a gold medal.
Andrew expressed hope that the incentive will inspire Malaysian shuttlers to bring out their best and get the first Olympic gold for the country.
“This is my challenge to our players. I hope it will motivate them to try even harder. I will only reward the gold medallist,” he told the players.
“You produce a gold medal, I will give you a gold bar.”
Andrew said the 12.5-kilogram gold bar, which is estimated to value 2 million ringgit (630,000 dollars), will be on top of the 1 million ringgit offered by the government to the player who could win an Olympic gold for the country.
He said his offer is only limited to the badminton team and if there would be more than one badminton player who will win a gold medal, the 12.5 kilogram gold bar will be divided among them.