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micky lin team singapore netball
File photo: Netball Singapore

It’s impossible not to know who Lin Qingyi is if you’re acquainted with the local netball scene. 

We can find her on publicity posters hanging from the lamps by the streets. We see her on the advertisements placed on our local buses. She even made the papers not long ago, for a manoeuvre which had teammate Premila Hirubalan lifting her in an attempt to intercept a lob to a 2.06 metres tall Sri Lankan giant.

As the captain of our national netball team, Lin is one of the star players of the squad, with 70 international caps in hand. She is more affectionately known as Micky to Singaporeans, because of her resemblance to the famous Disney mouse. But don’t be mislead by this term and her sweet demeanour – she is definitely not one to be underestimated on court. 

How Mickey got into Netball

Micky’s career in netball started out with an ardent interest in captain’s ball after participating in an inter-class captain’s ball tournament. She went on to cultivate this interest by joining netball as a co-curricular activity, and this eventually matured into a heartfelt passion for the game. As we all know, she went on to become a national player and is now the captain of the team.

In an interview with Netball Singapore, she said, “I see myself important in a very close match-up; to try to get as many turnovers as possible and feed it to my attackers.”

When asked about her love for the game, Micky freely responds, “I love playing netball because it’s a team sport. I like being involved in a team environment. I like the adrenaline and the competitiveness of the game.”

Playing Goal Defender or Goal Keeper for the team, she also enjoys the challenge netball presents to her mentally. She explained this in another interview with Team Singapore, “The thing with netball is that there is a mixture of strategy and gameplay. I find it interesting and it gets a little unpredictable at times.”

In netball, your physical attributes can either aid or hinder you. Micky’s assets include her height and elevation, which is especially crucial since she is playing on the defending end of her team. In comparison to the foreign national teams, our Singapore team loses out in terms of our physical attributes, as we tend to be leaner and smaller in size. However, we make up for this by focusing on our strengths instead, like our speed and agility.

Beyond the netball court

Netball has also played a crucial part in Mickey's life outside the game. It inculcated several life lessons that helped her along the way. “Discipline, focus, time management, perseverance… just to name a few. These skills I developed in netball are highly useful in school and work too!” 

“As important as it is with academics and other aspects of life, placing a certain emphasis on sports related activities should not be neglected as well. For me, I wouldn’t be achieving such balance in the other parts of my life if not for netball. You train up your discipline and hard work when you do sports.”

Mickey is also not without humour. When asked for a piece of clothing that describes her, she cheekily replied, “Sports Bra. Just because it’s supportive… get it?”

She highly encourages everyone to pick up netball as a sport. She hopes to inspire more girls to follow her path and for those looking for words of encouragement, Micky’s advice is to keep trying as you will never know when the opportunity will come.

Mickey and Team Singapore

Team Singapore is the current reigning Asian champion for netball. Considering our excellent stature, it is bewildering that our netball team fades into triviality when compared with other sports such as our Lions football team. 

However, it is a fact that netball is slowly rising up the ranks as it gains increasing prestige and recognition in the local scene. Netball is an extremely popular women’s sport whether in the working field or in our local schools. Just look at last year’s Nations Cup itself – we had more than 10 sponsors, and an official live broadcast of the finals.

It is also the first time that netball, as a sport, will be included in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games come 2015. Representing the national netball squad, Micky said in a Red Sports interview, “I think it’s something that we’ve really wanted to do for a long time, but didn’t have the opportunity to. In other countries, netball might not be a priority. So we are very happy and excited to note that netball will be in the 2015 SEA Games.”

Micky’s favourite moment being a netballer entails having the opportunity to represent the nation in something that she enjoys and excels in. 

“Netball is to me what water is to goldfish. It’s part of my life right now and I can’t get out of it.”

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