JB Koo still suspended, after 34 years, a national record

Koo Boo Jin, or more famously known as JB Koo created a record of sorts in tenpin bowling .

JB was a of member of the trio team who won the nation’s first ever gold medal in the FIQ World Championship in Manila in 1979 and the Sportsman of the Year 1979.

But he is suspended from the very sport that he excelled in to bring glory for the nation.

And the suspension dates back to 1986, making JB Koo the longest suspended athlete.

Even those serving life imprisonments for crimes normally are let off after a certain number of years.

And many footballers who were given life suspensions for their roles in the nations worst match fixing scandal have also seen their suspensions lifted.

But not JB Koo whose fate lies in wilderness.

JB’s woes with the Malaysian Tenpin Bowling Congress (MTBC) arose after he had spoken up on behalf of fellow national bowler Ringo Wang who was suspended by MTBC midway through a the Selangor Open in 1988.

“ I have the dubious distinction of being the longest suspended athlete in the history of Malaysian sports and through no fault of mine,” said JB when met over breakfast last Sunday.

JB was at that time working for Peter Stuyvesant and our company had sponsored a team which had Ringo in the team too.

But midway through the tournament, Ringo was banned for having made a press statement earlier questioning his exclusion from the national team,” recalled JB.

“I had questioned the ban because it was made mid-way in the tournament when they could have done it after the tournament. Ringo’s banning affected team and it did not go down well with the sponsors.

He was asked to attend a disciplinary meeting which he did not because JB felt that he had not done any wrong.

But he was subsequently banned for two years and he accepted it like a man.

“ However MTBC’s condition to lift my ban after the two years was for me to make a public apology, which I refused because I have already served my suspension and punished for my actions. Why should I be punished twice?” questioned JB who plays Golf almost daily.

And that’s not all that JB had to endure.

The Selangor TBA withdrew his life membership when he was banned. The life membership was given for his feat in Manila.

A heavy price to pay indeed for someone who only said what needed to be said then.

Surely the MTBC could now do the right thing and lift his suspension .

Or perhaps a petition needs to be started for a Royal Pardon from our sports loving King.

JB Koo’s achievements:

Negri  Open champion – 1977

Selangor Open champion – 1977 and 1981

National champion – 1977

Bronze medal 5-man team Asian FIQ – 1977 Bangkok

Gold medal 5-man team Asian Game – 1978 Bangkok

Gold medal 3-man team World FIQ – 1979 Manila

Bronze medal Masters World FIQ –  1979 Manila.

Malaysian Sportsman of the Year 1979.