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National Junior College shooter and Singapore Sports School sprinter crowned winners at The New Paper School Sports Star Award 2015

Singapore, 16 November 2015 – The winners of The New Paper School Sports Star Award 2015, presented by H-TWO-O, were announced today, with shooter Wong Han Xuan of National Junior College (NJC) and sprinter Diane Hilary Pragasam of the Singapore Sports School (SSS) bagging the boys’ and girls’ accolades respectively.

The duo were picked by a judging panel after a six-month search, which culminated in an award ceremony at the Sports School today. A public voting exercise was also taken into consideration.

Guest-of-Honour Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, presented a trophy, a certificate and a cheque for $3,000 to each winner.

Eight other finalists nominated in the top 10 received a trophy, a certificate and $500 each. 

A total of 24 nominees were shortlisted for this year’s School Sports Star Award.

The boys’ winner — NJC student Wong Han Xuan — is a consummate role model. 

Last December, the 18-year-old finished third in the junior category of the 38th Southeast Asia Shooting Championships.

He was the president of the school’s shooting club before stepping down in June to prepare for the A levels, but that did not stop him from continuing to help out whenever he can.

Dubbed a “maths and science whiz” by his teachers, he puts his interest in material science to good use. He and two friends are working on a project to build an electronic shooting target board for the team, who has been using paper targets at the range as they felt that electronic targets were too expensive.

The girls’ winner — Singapore Sports School’s Diane Hilary Pragasam — is so determined to reach the top of the sport that she watches her diet even during school holidays.

In the words of her coach, Margaret Oh, the 14-year-old is a “real fighter”. Her hard work paid off at this year’s National Inter School Track and Field Championships where she was the most bemedalled athlete with four gold medals.

In addition to the School Sport Star Award, the S Soocelaraj Award presented by Soilbuild Group, which honours outstanding teacher-coaches, was also given out at the award ceremony today. 

Mr Joel Vinson, recipient of the S Soocelaraj Award, received a certificate, a trophy and a cheque for $3,000 for his contributions to First Toa Payoh Primary School.

Making sure that his basketballers pick up the right values early in life, the 29-year-old head of physical education places discipline and ethics above winning medals.

With two other teachers, he also conducts revision sessions with his student-athletes to help them with their schoolwork.

Mr Seah Kiam Meng, 47, a physical education teacher and badminton coach at River Valley High School, finished first runner-up and received a certificate, a trophy and a cheque for $2,000. The second runner-up was Mr Zareen Shariff, 41, the subject head of Malay language and football coach at Loyang Primary School. He received a certificate, a trophy and a cheque for $1,000.

The New Paper School Sports Star Award was launched in 2011 to recognise the best student-athletes in the local school sports scene.

Paddler Chia Shing Kee of Raffles Institution and shooter Chua Shin Yoong of Catholic Junior College won the boys’ and girls’ award respectively last year.

Lim Han Ming, sports editor of The New Paper, said: “It is heartening to see all the nominees and winners displaying positive traits such as leadership, perseverance, discipline and sportsmanship. It is not only the achievements that we are looking for when choosing the winners, but the spirit of industry and endeavour that will put them in good stead for the rest of their sporting careers. We hope that, in recognising and rewarding these student-athletes and teacher-coaches, others will be inspired to follow in their footsteps."

For more information on the winners, visit

Attached image:

Photo credit: Jeremy Long, The New Paper

In photo:
Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth (center); Diane Hilary Pragasam, Singapore Sports School sprinter and The New Paper School Sports Star Award girls' winner (fourth from left);
Wong Han Xuan, National Junior College shooter and The New Paper School Sports Star Award boys' winner (fourth from right); Joel Vinson, First Toa Payoh Primary School teacher and recipient of the S Sooceleraj Award (second from right); and Dominic Nathan, editor, The New Paper (first from right).

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Limited 
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For more information, please contact:

Chua Pei Ling
Corporate Communications & CSR Executive

Singapore Press Holdings Limited
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About The New Paper

Launched in 1988, The New Paper has pioneered a style of journalism in Singapore that goes for sharp news angles. It puts a human face to Singapore stories and to complicated issues of the day. The New Paper is the second most-read English newspaper in Singapore after The Straits Times, with a huge following for its sports pages that provide strong sports coverage, especially in soccer news. The New Paper is also pioneering a different form of tabloid journalism by presenting complex issues in an easy-to-read, pop style for young and busy readers. It catches readers’ eyes with bold and colourful designs, exciting layouts and punch headlines. Now a big part of the Singapore scene, The New Paper strolled into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2000, when its annual mass-fitness event, The New Paper Big Walk, was recognised as the largest walk in the world.

About Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

Incorporated in 1984, main board-listed Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPH) is Asia’s leading media organisation, engaging minds and enriching lives across multiple languages and platforms.


The English/Malay/Tamil Media group comprises the print and digital operations of The Straits Times, The Business Times, The New Paper, Berita Harian, My Paper (English section) and two student publications IN and Little Red Dot. It also consists of Tamil Murasu Ltd, which publishes Tamil Murasu and tabla!; book publishing arm Straits Times Press; SPH Data Services, which licenses the use of the Straits Times Index, in partnership with the Singapore Exchange and FTSE Ltd; financial data company ShareInvestor; and the two English stations of SPH Radio - Kiss92 and ONE FM 91.3. 

The Chinese Media group publishes three Chinese newspapers - Lianhe Zaobao, Lianhe Wanbao and Shin Min Daily News; the digital editions of Lianhe Zaobao and Lianhe Wanbao, four student weeklies - zbCOMMA, Thumbs Up, Thumbs Up Junior and Thumbs Up Little Junior, ZbBz Newsgazine and My Paper (Chinese section). It also operates SPH Radio's Chinese radio station, UFM 100.3, and Focus Publishing, which produces a range of books and magazines including U-Weekly. 

SPH's other new media initiatives include AsiaOne, Stomp, and SPH Razor. 

SPH Magazines, SPH's wholly-owned subsidiary, publishes and produces more than 100 magazine titles and has various online sites, like and in Singapore and the region, covering a broad range of interests from lifestyle to information technology. It has also invested in digital newsstand Magzter.

SPH also provides out-of-home (OOH) advertising through its digital out-of-home platform SPHMBO.

SPH Buzz is a modern retail convenience chain with a network of stores around the island.

SPH has a 20 per cent stake in MediaCorp TV Holdings Pte Ltd, which operates free-to-air channels 5, 8 and U, and a 40 per cent stake in MediaCorp Press Limited, which publishes the free newspaper, Today.


SPH REIT is a Singapore-based REIT established to invest in a portfolio of income-producing real estate primarily for retail purposes. SPH REIT comprises Paragon, a premier upscale retail mall and medical suite/office property in Orchard Road and The Clementi Mall, a mid-market suburban mall in the centre of Clementi town.

The Seletar Mall, located in Sengkang, is SPH's latest retail development. This property is a potential asset to be injected into SPH REIT. SPH’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Times Development Pte Ltd, also developed a 43-storey upmarket residential condominium, Sky@eleven, at Thomson Road.

Other Businesses

Online Classified

SPH's online classified include ST701, the leading online marketplace for jobs (STJobs), property (STProperty), cars (STCars) and general classifieds (STClassifieds), sgCarMart and StreetSine.

SPH's regional joint venture online classified business has a number of leading online classified sites in the region.

Events and Exhibitions

Sphere Exhibits, Sphere Conferences, Exhibits Inc and Bizlink Exhibition Services organise innovative consumer and trade events and exhibitions as well as large scale conferences in Singapore and the region. 


SPH has a 22 per cent stake in preschool and enrichment provider MindChamps.

For more information, please visit