There are 18 Olympic gold winners from Southeast Asia – do you know all of them?

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Indonesia's badminton star Susi Susanti, who became Southeast Asia's first Olympic gold medallist when she won the women's singles event at the 1992 Barcelona Games. (PHOTO: Tony Marshall/EMPICS via Getty Images)
Indonesia's badminton star Susi Susanti, who became Southeast Asia's first Olympic gold medallist when she won the women's singles event at the 1992 Barcelona Games. (PHOTO: Tony Marshall/EMPICS via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — Southeast Asian nations have been competing at the Olympics since 1924, but it was not until 1992 that the region saw its first official gold medallist.

In fact, only four out of the 11 Southeast Asian countries had been able to celebrate their athletes winning gold - Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam.

Since 1992, there were 18 occasions when a Southeast Asian national anthem was played with their athletes standing proudly on the top podium. Do you know all of them?

NOTE: Indonesia had won the men's singles (Rudy Hartono) and doubles (Ade Chandra/Christian Hadinata) badminton competitions at the 1972 Munich Olympics, but the sport was only a demonstration event then and not part of the official programme.

Susi Susanti (Indonesia, badminton, 1992)

The very first official Southeast Asian gold medallist, Susanti was regarded as one of the finest shuttlers of her generation. She was the world No.1 player during the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, and dropped only one set en route to gold in the women's singles competition.

Alan Budikusuma (Indonesia, badminton, 1992)

Just a couple of hours after Susanti clinched gold, her then-boyfriend (now husband) Budikusuma scored a minor upset over his compatriot and World Cup winner Ardy Wiranata to clinch the men's singles gold. Indonesia celebrated the "Golden Couple" with a two-hour parade when they returned to Jakarta.

Somluck Kamsing (Thailand, boxing, 1996)

The first Thai athlete to win gold, Somluck defeated Bulgaria's Serafim Todorov – who had won a highly-controversial semi-final bout over future boxing star Floyd Mayweather Jr – to clinch the men's featherweight boxing title at the Atlanta Games. His subsequent fame saw him embark on a career as an athletic film star, and he even dabbled in music.

Rexy Mainaky/Ricky Subagja (Indonesia, badminton, 1996)

The most dominant men's doubles pair in the 1990s, both Mainaky and Subagja were fast-moving and hard-hitting on the court, as they swept to over 30 titles during the decade. The top seeds defeated Malaysia's Cheah Soon Kit and Yap Kim Hock in three sets to seal their men's doubles gold in Atlanta.

Wijan Ponlid (Thailand, boxing, 2000)

The diminutive Wijan clinched the men's flyweight gold at the Sydney Olympics after a tough final against Kazakhstan's Bulat Jumadilov, winning despite being floored twice. Upon returning to Thailand, he was honoured with a new house, over 20 million baht, a job promotion, and a parade that featured 49 elephants.

Tony Gunawan/Candra Wijaya (Indonesia, badminton, 2000)

Taking over the mantle of the most successful men's doubles pair from their compatriots Mainaky and Subagja, Gunawan and Wijaya would begin a successful run of major victories at the Sydney Olympics, edging out South Korea's Lee Dong-soo and Yoo Yong-sung in three sets for the gold.

Taufik Hidayat (Indonesia, badminton, 2004)

One of the finest male shuttlers to ever come out of Indonesia, Hidayat thrilled fans with his wide repertoire of shot-making, even though there were criticisms of arrogance and laziness. Nevertheless, the Indonesian was at his peak at the Athens Olympics, easily beating South Korea's Shong Seung-mo in straight sets to clinch the men's singles gold.

Thailand's Udomporn Polsak celebrates her gold medal in the women's 53 kg weighlifting competition at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Thailand's Udomporn Polsak celebrates her gold medal in the women's 53 kg weighlifting competition at the 2004 Athens Olympics. (PHOTO: Fayez Nureldine/AFP via Getty Images)

Udomporn Polsak (Thailand, weightlifting, 2004)

The first Thai woman to win an Olympic gold, Udomporn followed up on her triumph at the 2003 World Weightlifting Championships with her momentous win in the women's Under-53kg category in Athens. In 2007, she was given the honour of lighting the cauldron when the SEA Games was held at her hometown of Nakhon Ratchasima.

Pawina Thongsuk (Thailand, weightlifting, 2004)

Pawina swiftly followed Udomporn's footsteps by clinching gold in the women's Under-75kg division in Athens. She then became a dominant weightlifter in the lighter Under-63kg division, winning the World Championship in 2005 and setting a world record in the division's clean-and-jerk (145kg) en route to winning gold at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha.

Manus Boonjumnong (Thailand, boxing, 2004)

The light-footed counterpuncher scored a surprise gold over favourite Yudel Johnson of Cuba in the men's light-welterweight division at the Athens Games. Manus struggled with fame upon returning to Thailand, indulging in gambling, womanising and boozing. But to his credit, he managed to revive his career in time to win a silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Games.

Hendra Setiawan/Markis Kido (Indonesia, badminton, 2008)

Continuing Indonesia's grip on the men's doubles gold in badminton, Setiawan and Kido became the third pair from the country in as many Games to emerge triumphant in the competition, overcoming the home crowd to beat China's Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng in the final at the Beijing Games. Kido tragically died of a heart attack in June this year at age 36.

Somjit Jongjohor (Thailand, boxing, 2008)

Slow and steady wins it for Somjit, who had a slow and patient rise to the top after winning gold at the 2002 Asian Games. An unsuccessful attempt at the 2004 Athens Olympics failed to deter him, and he finally clinched the precious gold in Beijing, beating Cuba's Andry Laffita for the men's flyweight title. 

Prapawadee Jaroenrattanatarakoon (Thailand, weightlifting, 2008)

Born Junpim Kuntatean, Prapawadee changed her name in 2007 on the advice of a fortune teller, who said it would improve her chances of winning the Olympics. A year later, she proved the fortune teller was right by clinching the women's Under-53kg gold in Beijing, although her lucky name was so long that it was listed only as "J" on the digital scoreboard.

Joseph Schooling en route to winning Singapore's first gold medal in the men's 100m butterfly final at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
Joseph Schooling en route to winning Singapore's first gold medal in the men's 100m butterfly final at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics. (PHOTO: Odd Andersen/AFP via Getty Images)

Joseph Schooling (Singapore, swimming, 2016)

A long-time fan of Olympic icon Michael Phelps since his childhood days, Schooling stunned the swimming world by beating his American idol in the men's 100m butterfly final to clinch Singapore's first Olympic gold medal in Rio de Janeiro. It was a culmination of a stellar two-year run in which he won Singapore's first swimming medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and then set an Asian Games record two months later.

Liliyana Natsir/Tontowi Ahmad (Indonesia, badminton, 2016)

Possibly the greatest mixed doubles player ever, Natsir had won every major honour except for the Olympic gold. After coming in fourth in the 2012 London Games, she finally scaled the heights in dominant fashion with her long-time doubles partner Ahmad, winning the gold in Rio without dropping a set. 

Sopita Tanasan (Thailand, weightlifting, 2016)

Sopita continued Thailand's winning ways in women's weightlifting, clinching the Under-48kg title at the Rio de Janeiro Games. However, she was issued a two-year ban for using banned substances, while Thailand was also barred from this year's Olympics after eight of its weightlifters - including Sopita - tested positive for banned substances at the 2018 World Championships.

Sukanya Srisurat (Thailand, weightlifting, 2016)

Sukanya set an Olympic record of 110kg in the snatch en route to victory in the women's Under-58kg division in Rio. Like her good friend Sopita, she was also issued with a two-year ban for using banned substances in 2019, and will miss out on this year's Olympics.

Vietnam shooter Hoang Xuan Vinh is all smiles after winning his country's first Olympic gold medal in the men's 10m air pistol at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games.
Vietnam shooter Hoang Xuan Vinh is all smiles after winning his country's first Olympic gold medal in the men's 10m air pistol at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games. (PHOTO: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Hoang Xuan Vinh (Vietnam, shooting, 2016)

At the age of 41, Hoang became the oldest Southeast Asian gold medallist when he won the men's 10m air pistol competition at the Rio de Janeiro Games, ending his country's six-decade wait for gold at the same time. He quickly followed up his triumph by clinching a silver in the 50m pistol event.

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Indonesia's Golden Couple who won badminton’s first Olympic golds

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