Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Badminton's Great Mystery

1. Lin Dan, Chen Long, Chen Jin (retired), Xia Xuanze (retired), Wang Yihan, Zhang Nan, Ma Jin. 
2. Lee Chong Wei, Tan Wee Kiong, Goh V Shem, Goh Liu Ying.

Notice the difference?

The first set of badminton players are all from China. The second set are undoubtedly all-Malaysians.

Players from China are all composed of two words in their name, whereas for Malaysian players, all of them have three words accompanying their respective names.

They are all of Chinese origin, so why are the Chinese of the mainland have two words in their name, whereas Malaysian Chinese have three?

This has been puzzling me for some time now.

I asked one of my friends, Wong, to explain this.

A Liverpool supporter just like me, Wong is one of the untypical Chinese that I've ever met.

During the badminton matches (we watched Olympics together; matches that we watched include [1] Lin Dan-Lee Chong Wei, [2] Lin Dan-Viktor Axelsen, [3] Lee Chong Wei-Chen Long; [4] Tan Wee Kiong & Goh V Shem-Fu Haifeng & Zhang Nan) I overheard him muttering 'mata sepet' towards the Chinese pair, because they were leading at the time.

It is very unusual for a Chinese to say such words towards a fellow Chinese, but that is just Wong.

Wong explained that most or almost all of our Malaysian Chinese originated from southern China. Even his grandfather was from there. 

"He arrived here penniless," was the exact phrase used by Wong. 

Chinese from the southern part of China have three words in their names (e.g. Lee Chong Wei), whereas from the rest of China, their names composed of only two words (e.g. Lin Dan).

That indirectly indicates that all (mainland) Chinese badminton players hailed not from the southern part, right? That would be another mystery.

Whatever the case, now my great mystery of badminton has been solved.