With dad as his inspiration, Jovi overcomes his grief and wins
His father's death made Jovi Lim more determined to win RI the A Division basketball title
Like the rest of his teammates, Jovi Lim was psyched up for the National A Division basketball season.
But, four days before it began, his world came crashing down.
His father, 44, died in a motorcycle accident in Thailand.
The tragedy hit Jovi hard. But he decided to find strength in the sport he loves.
And the 17-year-old ended up powering Raffles Institution to their first basketball championship in 15 years, beating Hwa Chong Institution 78-61 in the final last month to end their nine-year stranglehold on the crown.
Amid his grief, Jovi used his father as his inspiration.
He said: "On the way (to the final), I thought this is the toughest match I have played in.
"But since I've been through more (challenging circumstances), it was motivation to keep calm."
His teammates proved to be pillars of support during the difficult time.
He said: "They came down after training almost every day for the wake and funeral, and that really gave me the courage to face the fact that my dad had passed away.
"They brought fun into training to help me forget the pain. That really helped because, to see them have fun while I was not was quite hard.
"It was the team and my passion for basketball that helped me overcome (my grief)."
His teacher-in-charge, Carlsen Tay, had given him some time to contemplate if he wanted to go ahead and compete.
But Tay wasn't expecting Jovi, who plays as a centre, to say yes.
He said: "We were quite surprised when he told us he was going to play, but it was probably a way to distract himself from the grief."
In fact, Jovi impressed his teammates so much that, one week before the championship match, he was made vice-captain.
Said Tay: "He is a sensible and likeable person, and that was probably why the team voted for him.
"He complements his captain well.
"The captain is quite a technical player.
"What Jovi brings is that human factor."
Jovi also received plenty of encouragement from his family.
In a show of support, his three siblings and mother went down to Jurong East Sports Hall to witness his victory in the final.
Said Jovi: "My mum is very optimistic. She's always telling us to carry on with our lives.
"To see her keep her composure until now so as not to affect my siblings and I really helped a lot."
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