Sporting Life

Joseph Schooling: A hero has foolishly tripped, let's pick him up

The hero's life changes faster than even he can consider. ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG
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SINGAPORE - In small nations big heroes make a loud noise. It happens when they rise and also when they fall. Their medals make us weep and their mistakes make us wince. We prefer them to be faultless and yet they are mostly imperfect. This hero business is always a complicated, human one.

The hero's life changes faster than even he can consider. At the Rio Olympics in 2016, Joseph Schooling took a mere 50.39 seconds to hold off the world in the 100m butterfly. Now in less than a day this summer that beauty has been somewhat blemished. Moment of magic now sits beside "moment of weakness" as he called his consumption of cannabis. Neither is erasable.

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