S'porean Soh Rui Yong gives water to Indonesian 10,000m race leader who fumbled water bottle


Belmont Lay | May 12, 2023, 04:05 AM

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Singaporean runner Soh Rui Yong won the silver medal in the men's 10,000m at the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia on May 11.

It was his first time competing in the event at the SEA Games.

His win came on the back of Soh having not competed in the SEA Games for more than five years, owing to disputes with the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) and other parties.

Besides securing the runner-up position, one highlight of the race that got people talking was Soh's sportsmanship.

Sportsmanship on show

With slightly more than five laps to go in the race, Soh was seen handing water to his fellow competitor, Rikki Marthin Luther Marthin from Indonesia, who was just ahead of the Singaporean.

This was after Marthin tried to grab hold of a bottle of water from the hydration table, but fumbled.

Soh, who was trailing Marthin at that point some 24 minutes into the 10,000m run, managed to get hold of a cup of water, which he used to pour over his head, before handing the remainder to his competitor.

Soh appeared to call out to Marthin while approaching him from the left.

The fair play act has since been viewed hundreds of thousands of times online.

@mothershipsg sportsmanship wins #tiktoksg #sgnews #seagames31 #sportsmanship ♬ original sound - Mothership.sg

Many who viewed the clip praised Soh for not capitalising on the his competitor's mistake to gain ground.


Soh reportedly only had six weeks to train after the SNOC gave him the green light in March to participate in this year's SEA Games.

On May 9, he finished fourth in the men's 5,000m.

He is not competing in his pet marathon event.

Soh's race strategy for the 10,000m competition saw him lag behind for some portions of the race, only to increase his pace in the final few laps.

While racing Marthin neck-to-neck, Soh appeared to keep pace while hounding down the Indonesian, who had to be alert to Soh's whereabouts just behind him.

Soh ended up beating the rest of the pack comfortably, but the mind games was not enough -- he was unable to catch up to the eventual gold medal winner.

His time of 31min 10.70sec was a vast improvement from his previous best of 31:12.05 set in 2022.

Marthin clocked 31:08.85.

Soh was seen congratulating Marthin after both men crossed the finish line.

Top photo via NG TV