09 September 2017
More than 20 years ago, it was a rather common sight to see two brothers at the Serangoon Country Club bowling alley. They were obviously novices just trying their hands at the sport – both as a form of entertainment, and a way to bond like only brothers will.
At the lanes, the elder brother would watch the seasoned pros play. He’d then boldly approach them to ask them for bowling tips, which he shared immediately with his younger brother. Bit by bit, pin by pin, spare to strikes – they honed themselves.
By the time they were teens, the brothers were accomplished bowlers. Edward, the elder, clinched first place in a club junior tournament. His younger brother, then 12 years old, wasn’t far behind. He snagged the bronze.
It was at this point that the younger knew that bowling was the sport he wanted to commit to. He even harboured dreams that bowling would be how he’d make his country proud.
“I was hoping that one day I can be a national bowler,” he says.
Flash forward to 2003. The younger brother had improved so much that he found himself in Ireland, bowling at a world-level event against the best there was. He won global gold on that outing, at the tender age of 15. When he returned, people would actually stop him and go, “hey, aren’t you the bowler that helped Singapore win the Gold medal in Ireland?”
In 2015, this bowler donned Singapore red for his country once again. This time, he claimed silver, missing out on gold by just 13 pinfalls.
Meet Eric Foo, one of the many talents on Team Singapore’s ASEAN Para Games bowling squad.
Family and friends pin high praise – and expectations – on Eric
“Eric is the type of person who will go all out to do what’s right. I hope he continues to be a role model and inspires others to be as dedicated as he is.”
– Edward Foo, Eric’s elder brother
Eric (left) and his elder brother Edward (right)
Eric is a happy, cheerful person. He’s sociable and very generous towards his friends, colleagues and bowling mates. Pop by Forte Bowl in Kovan on Wednesday evenings when the team trains and you’ll see him exchanging high-fives with them after every strike, and cheering on his mates to help them bowl their best. It’s a very united and positive vibe, and you tell just by looking at him that Eric really loves bowling.
“Bowling has changed Eric’s life. His dedication for bowling is evident in his 20 over years of experience. He has strong passion for the sport – he pushes himself to excel and he won’t complain,” says older brother Edward.
Edward also observes how Eric has matured a lot as a bowler since their childhood days. The Eric of before tended to give up on himself if his opponent started gaining too big a lead, but as an adult, Eric will now always pursue a game to the end and put up a good fight. This fighting spirit is what Edward hopes to continue building up in Eric to help him bring his A-game to KL.
“The whole family is very proud of the fact that Eric represents Singapore and that he’s an ASEAN Para Games medallist. But having bowled with him since we were kids ‘pestering’ our dad for bowling gear, I know that, with just a little guidance on our part, he can bowl even better.”
“I want to represent Singapore because I want to win something for the country and everybody. I will fight all the way.”
– Eric Foo
‘Team Eric’ spares no effort to help him be his best
Above and beyond his family’s amazing support, Eric has always had plenty of people looking out for him. In Chaoyang School, the teachers went the extra mile to find him a dedicated bowling coach. When he went on to Delta Senior School, they not only ensured that Eric received a quality education, they also collaborated with an international law firm in 2007 to place Eric there for work, where he’s been employed full-time ever since. And everyone in the firm adores Eric. They’re always encouraging him to keep training hard for his bowling, even though that means Eric is the one who winds up winning practically every company bowling event they organise!
“I like my current workplace. I’ve been very happy working there for the past ten years. My boss wants me to focus and win the gold medal.”
Call him Ferrari, or Cannonball
“My ball speed is very fast. 48km/h. At the Special Olympics in Ireland, my nickname was Ferrari!”
– Eric Foo
Eric is similarly never alone when it comes to his national bowling endeavours. Sam and Adam, his coaches, are always at hand to help him improve.
“Sam coaches me on things like how to spare the 7 and 10 pins, and on my straight balls and diagonal balls. Adam is helping me with my hook ball to get better striking,” Eric shares.
“They say that I’m like a cannonball. Once I throw the ball – BAM! – the pins get scared and I strike!”
On a roll
With so much support and love surrounding Eric, it’s no wonder why this bowler is super positive about going up to KL. When he goes for the pins in the ASEAN Para Games, Eric wants to do his country proud and go one better than his prior APG silver, straight for gold. And Edward believes that’s certainly possible.
“Eric’s bowling technique has evolved. Other than the fact that he is like a ‘Ferrari’, Eric is learning to rev the ball more. With this new technique, his strike rate is higher and the error margin is lower.”
“We will all do our best. We need to focus everything, make Singapore proud, and show we can do it.”
– Eric Foo
Raise the momentum
Come show you believe in Eric as much as his brother, coaches, colleagues and friends do. Join him in KL, power him up, and cheer his every strike!
Stay tuned to TeamSingapore.sg and TeamSG Facebook for updates on our athletes at the ASEAN Para Games!