Meet the Malaysian athletes competing at the 2022 Winter Olympics

Are you ready for the 2022 Winter Olympics?

The most anticipated winter edition of the Olympics is almost here, and this time, with two Malaysian athletes representing the nation. Since the excitement surrounding the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, we’ve turned our attention to the Winter Games. Just six months apart, the prestigious event will kick off on Friday February 4, 2022 and end on February 20, 2022. Before we get down to business, here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming Games and our Malaysian athletes.

Taking place in Beijing, China, the 2022 quadrennial Olympic Winter Games will take place at three venues: Beijing, Yangqing and Zhangjiakou. There will be 109 events in seven sports at the Winter Olympics, including skating, skiing, ice hockey, curling, bobsleigh, luge and biathlon.

Located 75 kilometers northwest of central Beijing, alpine skiing and sliding events (bobsleigh, luge and skeleton) will take place in Yanqing. While other skiing and snowboarding events – cross-country, ski jumping and more – take place in Zhangjiakou, a well-known ski destination located 180 kilometers northwest of Beijing.

Malaysia made its debut at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang thanks to alpine skier Jeffrey Webb and Canadian figure skater Julian Yee. Unfortunately, Julian Yee, who finished 25th in men’s singles in 2018, will not be competing at the 2022 Winter Olympics due to the suspension of various qualifying skating events due to the Covid-19 situation.

In 2018, Julian secured a spot at the 2018 Winter Olympics by placing sixth in the 2017 Nebelhorn Trophy in Germany. He went home in 25th place in the men’s singles division.

Who will represent Malaysia at the 2022 Winter Olympics?

Image credit: Twitter/@ocm_mom

23-year-old alpine skier Jeffrey Webb is making his second appearance at the Olympic Winter Games. He is joined by 17-year-old alpine skier Aruwin Salehhuddin, who was training in Croatia before the games. Through World Ranking Merit, Jeffrey and Aruwin qualified to compete in the 2022 Winter Olympics.

Here’s what you need to know about them:

Image credit: Twitter/@ocm_mom

American-Malaysian-American Jeffrey Webb is representing Malaysia making his debut at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. As the first to do so, Jeffrey Webb grabbed headlines for putting Malaysia in the spotlight. For Jeffrey, his passion and love for the sport grew when he was just five years old. Believe it or not, what drew him to the sport was the ski team jackets. To pursue his passion, he joined a local team in Washington called the Mission Ridge Ski Team.

Over the years, Webb has competed in various alpine ski racing games in Canada and the United States, earning him the points needed to secure a spot at the 2018 Winter Olympics. He finished strong in 68th place out of 110 skiers for the giant slalom in 2018. For those unfamiliar, slalom is an alpine skiing and alpine snowboarding discipline where players ski between poles and gates.

Competing for his second consecutive Games, find Jeffrey Webb competing in the men’s slalom category on February 6 at 11 a.m.

Introducing Aruwin Salehhuddin

Based in Colorado, USA, 17-year-old Aruwin Salehhuddin is emerging as the first female athlete to represent Malaysia in alpine skiing. Aruwin is following in the footsteps of his father and former Olympian Salehuddin Ayob, who competed in the kayak singles at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996.

Thanks to her parents, Aruwin was fascinated by skiing at the age of two. At the age of 13, she took a leap of faith by taking up sports professionally while balancing school. Fast forward to four years later, Aruwin is ready to show what she’s got, and we can’t wait to see how Aruwin performs at the Games.

Catch Aruwin competing in the women’s slalom on February 9, from 10:15 a.m. to 11:50 p.m., and in the women’s giant slalom on February 7, from 10:15 a.m. to 11:55 a.m.

Program

For downhill skiing, see the schedule here. Visit the site here for more information.

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Hero image credit: Unsplash/Daniel Frank; Featured image credit: Unsplash/Nicolai Berntsen.

Naomi C. Amerson