Memorable events in Malaysian History and Culture.

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   1. INTRODUCTION………………………………………pg 2

   2. 1949 THOMAS CUP……………………………………pg 4

   3. INDEPENDENCE DAY……………………………… 9

   4. MAY 13 INCIDENT, 1969…………………………… 12



   7. CONCLUSION…………………………………………pg 25

   8. APPENDIX…………………………………………… 26

   9. REFERENCES………………………………………….pg 29


As a citizen of a country, we should understand and know the history of the country. This is because through history, a person will come to know himself, his society, nationality and country. History can also be a useful guide to help indentify events that we must treasure, emulate or reject. By understanding history, we learn to inculcate values such as loyalty towards the nation, honesty, courage and at the same time build up the spirit of nationalism and patriotic. Without a knowledge of the country’s history we may not have the source or base to understand the country’s position, in terms of its demographics, economy, politics, culture and social composition. Therefore, we are touching on the topic of memorable events to preserve the history of the country. Our country has many memorable events which are unforgettable and meaningful to the nation. There are many people who brought fame for the country which we should ignore or forget their achievements and victories from them. One of the great contributors is the late Tunku Abdul Rahman, our first Prime Minister who forth for Independence for the country on 31st August 1957. He was also known as ‘Bapa Kemerdekaan’ as he brought a big relief for the nation saving all from the enemies.

October 10th , 2007 Dr Sheikh Muszaphar flew under an agreement with Russia, the astronaut program to space, and returned to earth on Oct 21st , 2007, bringing along another big fame and recognition to our country.  The whole country was proud of the tremendous achievement.

The 1949 Thomas Cup was the inaugural tournament of Thomas Cup, the most important men's badminton team competition in the world.

The May 13 Incident is a term for the Sino-Malay sectarian violences in Kuala Lumpur (then part of the state of Selangor), Malaysia, which began on May 13, 1969. The riots led to a declaration of a state of national emergency and suspension of Parliament by the Malaysian government。

August 31, 1999, a date which made the whole world to know about Malaysia because of the opening of the tallest building in the world which is known as Kuala Lumpur City Center(KLCC)

1949 Thomas Cup

Malaysia (then known as Malaya) had the honour of winning the first ever International Badminton Championship Challenge Cup, better known as the Thomas Cup in 1949. Such a historic win put Malaysia in the forefront of the international sport. Forever will the name of Malaysia glorify the annals of world badminton history, starting off with this most historic win, the victory of winning the first ever “World Cup” of badminton.


The Thomas Cup was the brainchild of Sir George Alan Thomas, an extremely successful badminton and chess player of the 1900’s. He felt that badminton needed an equivalent to tennis’ Davis Cup, and football’s World Cup which was held first in 1930. He proposed this idea to the International Badminton Federation (now known as the Badminton World Federation) in 1939 and received positive response from the sport’s governing body. That same year, Sir George presented The International Badminton Championship Challenge Cup, unofficially known as the Thomas Cup, produced by Atkin Bros of London at a cost of US$40 000. The Cup is 28 inches high and 16 inches across at its widest diameter and consists of three parts: a pedestal, a bowl, and a lid with a badminton player figure. The first tournament was planned for the 1941-1942 season but had to be delayed due to World War Two. The competition was finally held in 1949 for the first time, that historic year when Malaysia won the first ever Thomas Cup competition.


Popularized by British army officers in India, badminton eventually made its way to Malaya. State club associations and private clubs started establishing themselves throughout Malaya. In 1931, the Penang, Selangor and Singapore badminton associations formed the Malayan Badminton Association.

By the mid-1930s, badminton had become a popular sport throughout Malaya. The ease of setting up badminton courts, whether in a simple hall or on open ground in villages, encouraged the growth of badminton clubs such as the Mayflower Badminton Party, which produced several prominent players. Players were groomed and trained to compete through frequent club competitions and games. In particular, the Malayan Badminton Championships, organised by the Association, attracted some of the best players in Malaya, including Wong Peng Soon, Seah Eng Hee and Alice Pennefeather.


The first Thomas Cup had three qualifying zones, they were Pan America, Europe, and the Pacific. The 1949 format lasted until 1984. All matches between nations consisted of nine individual matches. A nation needed to win five out of nine matches to proceed to the next round. Malaya was the only participant from the Pacific region and hence gained an automatic qualification into the Thomas Cup Finals held in the United Kingdom. Denmark won the European qualifying matches while the United States of America won the Pan American qualifying rounds. Each region could only be represented by a single nation.

It was believed that qualification for the Malayan Thomas Cup team was through the Malayan Badminton Championships and the Foong Seong Cup which former badminton hero, Teoh Seng Khoon explained was a platform for state players to represent the country.

According to Seng Khoon again, the only living player from the 1949 team, they had to run and skip on the ship in order to keep fit for the tournament.


Malaya played two matches to clinch the title. Denmark was given a bye in the first round and hence automatically qualified for the Final. So Malaya had to play against the United States and then Denmark. Malaya caused a major upset by beating the United States 6-3.  The match featured the first of three matches ever played between the two greatest players during the post-war period, Malaya’s Wong Peng Soon and the United States’ Dave Freeman. Malaya’s Peng Soon however lost the great match as he succumbed to an injury.

In the final, Malaya upset European qualifiers Denmark, who had proudly declared that they would sweep past the Asian minnows, an 8-1 thrashing!


Wong Peng Soon is acknowledged as one of the greatest badminton players of all time. In addition to being part of the Malayan Thomas Cup teams from the late 1940’s to the late 1950’s, he won the All-England singles title four times.

He was known for his graceful footwork and well-crafted strokes. He made it a point to study his opponent’s game. He was very disciplined in maintaining his fitness level and had a strict diet as well. Greatly attached to his equipment, he strung and repaired his own rackets. In his teens, he joined the Mayflower Badminton Academy.

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Born on the 18th of November in 1923 in Kuching, Ong Poh Lim became one of the greatest badminton players of the period. Although he was sidelined by rival Wong Peng Soon many times, he’s had his good days against Peng Soon as well. A unique trait of his that put him past his rival however is the fact that Poh Lim had proven his mastery not only in the singles event, but also the doubles event.

He has an aggressive playing style and pioneered the crocodile serve or low serve, that is now a standard feature of the ...

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