This is more than just homework..

better late than never, does not work all the time..
October 10, 2010, 10:47 am
Filed under: Uncategorized


Being the host of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, Singaporeans should have known better than to be late to register for their finals in the Commonwealth Games this year. The Singapore men’s 4x200m freestyle relay team was disqualified from their final as they missed the allocated time for the registration. It is not a matter of who is at fault and start pointing fingers, but more of the importance of the game to the entire team. It is not just the responsibility of the coach to be on time, but the participants themselves to take responsibility of the competition they are competing.

The Singapore team is not new to the procedure, but have taken traffic in Delhi, a unfamiliar place, for granted. Knowing full well that the registration closes at 3pm, head coach Ang Peng Siong still chose to leave the Games Village and 2.45 pm, and even estimated the travelling time to be 20-30 minutes. His excuse for departing later than he should was, “I wanted to hand in as late as possible in case of injuries so i could make changes to the line-up.” Undeniably, I felt that his excuse was unacceptable as instead of antipating an injury to take place, it is the head coach and the participants responsibility to take good care of their body and health hours before the competition. Furthermore, Ang took the grace period of the submission for granted, and even had the mentality to fall back on this grace period to get them to compete in finals.

To me, although the stress that Ang was facing did contibute to his inability to manage the team, however, these are the responsibilities that he has to uptake in order for him to be head coach. 4 promising swimmers was enthrusted under his care, yet due to his carelessness, he deprived the boys of such a valuable experience. No matter how tough the situation was, he has to be able to think clearly and make the best decisions on his swimmers behalf. The long wait at the venue for their competition should nto be the pressing issue, getting a confirmed spot in the finals for the boys was. However, not all fingers should be pointed to Ang as the boys should have voiced out when they knew they were running late.

Do we all sometimes take time for granted? Thinking that time would stand still  and wait for us. Knowing that there was a grace period does not necessarily mean you should use it. Do we all take grace periods to deadlines for granted, hoping that by a sheer of luck we could push back the deadlines? To me, deadlines are deadlines for a reason. When we expected to complete something by this deadline, we should strictly adhere to it and not hope for a grace period. The deadlines set are reasonable and even if they weren’t, we should have voiced out our opinion when the deadlines were first set. No excuse, valid or not, can cover up for it. When it is time to face the music of our delayed reaction, we just have to face it head on and admit our mistake. I hope not only the swim team but all other teams for any major games, in this aspect, would respect punctuality and learn from this heartbreaking mistake made by the Singapore team.


15 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Just like gamblers who like to place their neck on the line just to try their luck in winning a few million dollars, we could say we apply the same approach in our daily lives.

Often, we take time for granted and we assume we will always “be on time” or we “have enough time” to do our stuff. We could say that it is human nature that lead us to procrastination but then again, there are others who have marvelous self control that can result in good time management.

Comment by dykx88

I can sort of empathize with the swimming team’s feelings. My previous piano teacher had once forgotten to register my practical examination for me. The exam is held once a year only, which means I have to wait another year for that chance. My parents were unhappy with her oversight, but because I wished to continue my lessons with her, they did not “fire” her. My experience might be insignificant as compared to the national team’s, but it says the same thing. Time, opportunity and possibly money were wasted because someone took some things for granted. It’s also unfair for others to face the the consequence when the fault is primarily not on them.

Comment by Han Jun

Everyone errs from time to time. Yes, some mistakes have bigger consequences but I feel that the head coach cannot be blamed for negligence. He did think for the team. He wanted the team to do well. Thus, he wanted to register as late as possible to ensure he has the most competent team at hand for the games. But it was his failure to consider all the things that can go wrong that screwed him over. Can we blame him? Not entirely. It was a case of misfortune. But there is still a lesson to learn. We should, like denise says, not take time for granted. We can start by meeting our friends in time. 😀

Comment by Dinesh

The term “Murphy’s Law” comes into mind. Whatever might go wrong, will go wrong; and it will go wrong in such a way that they will come and bite you hard and leave you hurting for a long time. If only everyone has that concept in mind when adhering to deadlines, I believed that no one will miss a deadline again. While it is not the head coach’s fault totally, I believe that he has to shoulder most of the blame. He is the head coash, an individual put into place as a guidance to the swimmers and ensure that they get the best results they ever could. With the recent fiasco, Singapore would no doubt find others untrustful of our coaches.

Comment by Boon

To be blatantly late for such an important event, I can only say the head coach will more than likely find his career jeopardized in the near future. And he deserved it, for Being so irresponsible.

Comment by Angel

Deadlines, when taken into literal meaning, means if you cross the line, you’re dead. It is there to force us to work, to stop us from proscasinating. However, this does not deter some people from doing it, such as the head coach. While he might have valid excuses, the fact that he deprived the athletes under him a chance to compete is wrong.

Comment by Yanling

I myself am guilty of procrastination. I believe that as long as we’re human, we will make the mistake of procrastinating. However, some will lead to huge consequence, as told in the entry above. I agree that while his reasons are valid, the fact that this result occurs is unforgiveable. And no amount of excuses will absolve him of his guilt.

Comment by Eve

Procrastination. The bane of bosses and teachers everywhere. It leads to undesired result and usually bad situations. However, due to our innate laziness, we will procrastinate, no matter how bad we know it is.

Comment by Philip

Very well written work. I agree with you totally. Procrastination is the downfall of Man.

Comment by Jason Tan

I agree! I procrastinate at times too! I know it’s bad, but I just can’t help it. I believe that procrastinating is ok, as long as you’re willing to take responsibility for your actions, and not blame others for it.

Comment by Junjie

I agree with what you said! Your last paragraph can be applied to everyday life, and everyone should learn from it!!

Comment by June

Who can claim to be innocent of procrastination? The only way we will stop procrastinating is if it coats us dearly. As people would say, once bitten twice shy. I’m sure the head coach would think twice before committing such a mistake again.

Comment by Ryan

To procrastinate is in human nature, it is practically ingrained in us. I agree that with lesser procrastination in our lives, our lives would be considerably easier.

Comment by Shirley

I wonder how the athletes under the coach think of him now. He is someone that should be respected, yet he commit this kind of mistake. How is he going to face them in the future? Procrastination hurta, yet we can blame nobody but ourselves when the situation turns bad.

Comment by Audrey

Procrastinate is something I am guilty of at times too! Iknow its bad, but I just can’t help it. After hearing about the incident, I know now that procrastinating might lead to serious consequences for others, and I will think twice before doing it. I think your advice are quite sound, and I will try my best to do it too!

Comment by Lee Ying

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: