Small Beginnings: Never Discount Them!
“Small beginnings are the launching pad for great endings.” – Quoted by Joyce Meyer
One picked up Hockey as it was fun while the other picked it up out of curiosity. Both never expected to be playing for the Singapore National Team in Hockey.
Cheryll Chia & Hajaratih Binte Johana, both, recently earned their 50th Cap in January 2022 representing Singapore in Muscat, Oman.
Both Cheryll & Hajaratih started their journey into the sport of hockey at a very young age. Not giving much thought toexcelling in the sport to be a professional, they both enjoyed playing with their friends in school. What started out as a leisure sport for them became something more.
Cheryll has represented Singapore on many occasions. One of her My favorite memory definitely has to be when we won the game against Kazakhstan on home ground at the HSO 2018 and qualified to go to Ireland for HSF 2019. They came back to win the game in the last minute after being down by 2 and it was really heartening to see the whole team playing hard until the final whistle.
Likewise, for Hajaratih her memory dates back to her first SEA GAMES back in 2017. She was down with a minor tear on my MCL before the competition. She didn’t want to miss this opportunity so she recovered tirelessly on physio and rehab. In just a month or so, she got back in action.
As the popular phrase goes, “Practice Makes Progress”, both Cheryll and Hajaratih share the same sentiments in terms of personal growth in their journey for the sport.
Hard work and lots of training have really paid off. Talking through games regularly with their teammates definitely has helped with their understanding of the game and have come a long way together since they played my first cap. They’ve developed confidence since then and are more capable of holding their ground against bigger opponents who have more experience than themselves.
Off the field, both Cheryll and Hajaratih know how to have fun. Cheryll managed to play a casual game of soccer with the Malaysian team in Ireland after their hockey games. Though they were opponents, they managed to have a friendly kickabout to enjoy themselves in a different setting. Hajaratih had a food-exploding experience in her hotel room. Being in Kakamigahara, Japan, finding halal food options was limited, the team bought local food from Singapore. One of the evenings when her teammate opened up a container of sambal, it exploded on the wall. She recorded the whole experience on camera for memento’s sake.
To this date, both Cheryll and Hajaratih continue to play hockey. Taking inspiration from players from all over the world, continuous learning and practice, they continue to hone their skills so that when they represent Singapore, they will be able to contribute to the continued success of the Singapore National Hockey Team.