Gary Kwok Chun Tin is a third-year graduate student and is working with Dr. Patrick Gunning on making molecules for treating cancer. Due to hardships during his undergraduate studies, Gary was not able to play badminton for university as a freshman. He used to play badminton in high school and joined the university team in later years of his undergraduate studies.
Gary sheds light on the fact that UTM’s badminton team is fairly new, and has only been established for about three years—making this year its fourth year. After years of struggle, the team made it to regionals last year. It was a big victory for the badminton team and definitely an encouragement for all the players.
Gary’s parents have always been supportive and encouraging but even they did not encourage him to play badminton in university. They felt it would have been too much pressure on him and difficult to balance school work and being on a team. The team has mostly undergraduate players, so Gary is surrounded by people he can relate to and talk about how difficult it can be to balance matches, practices, and studies. Gary plays in doubles but he admits that he is more of a net player.
This is Gary’s second year as the team captain—having the support and encouragement of both parents and coaches is much needed under such pressure. He has to ensure that they are not discouraged or afraid of playing and he strives to motivate his team to always improve on their skills. The team practices twice a week and has already played their first tournament of the season. Despite the negative feedback from other teams, the team continues to improve.
Gary thanks his coaches for their support and efforts. He also appreciates his team’s hard work and encourages them to keep it up. He hopes that fellow students come out to watch and support the team at UTM’s next game.