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Double feat for NUS in dragon boat race of the year

13 July 2011

In Boat 3, the NUS women’s team amidst stiff competition

The NUS men’s team (Boat 5) in the lead

NUS did it again! We won both the men and women Prime Minister Challenge Trophy Dragon Boat Race on 10 July 2011, a feat we had not been able to achieve since 2008. For the past four years, the challenge trophy eluded the men’s team while the women’s team continued to triumph in the race amongst the four local universities.

The Academic Year of 2010/2011 (AY 10/11) proved to be a year of challenge. Our women’s team began the year with a new intake of dragon boaters. However, by the second semester, the team strength dwindled to 22, just enough to make up a full crew for the race. Determined not to let this obstacle affect them, the ladies trained harder than before and maintained their focus on the goal. Given the odds, the outcome was certainly heartening.

AY 10/11 also proved to be a year of change. The trophy eluded our men’s team since 2008 and over the last four years the team had gone from first to last. With a new coach on board, the men's team took on kayaking as a totally new approach to training. They also joined forces with the NUS Canoeing Team, recognising that much could be achieved together as one teamNUS. Being the underdog allowed the team to train under much less pressure but with no less fortitude. Emphasis on improvement was continuously drilled into everyone from day one. The team embraced the new training methods and were fully committed and supportive of their coach and each other.

On the race day, our women’s team beat stiff competition to emerge the winner, proving once again that they were a force to be reckoned with. But the dark horse was our men’s team who showed their mettle with an equally stunning finish, before a jubilant crowd of supporters. After four years of waiting, both trophies are finally back together in NUS and in true teamNUS spirit.

By Sean Tan, Office of Student Affairs