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Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Former badminton star admitted a British barrister-at-law and now an advocate and solicitor of Malaysian High Courts

Raising the bar: Ang showing her admission petition to her father Chin Huat. Looking on is her mother Yoong Lai Chun and sister Annie. 
KUALA LUMPUR: She used to be a star in the badminton court but now it is the court of law that beckons gutsy Ang Li Peng.

She has created history by being the first Commonwealth badminton gold medallist to be called to the Malaysian Bar.

The national badminton player overcame the odds, including the language barrier, to achieve her ambition, which seemed like a dream seven years ago.

“I am over the moon. I never thought this day would finally come. Thank God, everything turned out beautifully today. It is amazing, it is like a dream come true,” the 31-year-old said after being admitted and enrolled as an advocate and solicitor of the High Courts in Malaya at the Jalan Duta Court Complex here along with others.

The petition was made by lawyer Tan Sri Cecil Abraham at the Appellate and Special Powers High Court before Justice Abang Iskandar Hashim.

Besides family members and friends, Kuala Lumpur Racquet Club founder Datuk Seri Andrew Kam and Olympic Council of Malaysia honorary secretary Datuk Sieh Kok Chi turned up to show their support.

Ang posing with her gold medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.
Ang posing with her gold medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.
Ang, who read law in Britain and has been a barrister-at-law at Middle Temple since last November, said she wanted to become a lawyer because as a badminton player, she believed in fair play and justice.

But the road to success was not an easy one. She managed to do her A-levels at the age of 24 and had to overcome her struggles with the English language.

“I did not speak good English. I could not even construct a sentence properly,” said Ang, who had studied at a Chinese medium school.

“That is why I'm very pleased for being able to graduate with a British law degree. I kept practising and will keep practising,” she added.

Ang, who is now pursuing her post-graduate studies in law in London, said she still had a lot to learn.

“The transformation from one court (badminton) to the other is challenging but I will continue to work hard and focus on being a better lawyer,” said the former doubles champion, who plans to specialise in corporate law.

She said it was very tough to study A-levels seven years after completing her SPM examinations.

“Going back to school was really tough. There were times when I wanted to quit.

“But I decided to remain steadfast with the support of family and friends. Determination is the best way,” said Ang, who retired from professional badminton at the age of 21 after winning the Commonwealth doubles gold in Manchester.

By FLORENCE A. SAMY The Star/Asia News Network

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