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No hard feelings, says Kim Lye

SINGAPORE — Despite Monday’s mix-up at the Jalan Besar Stadium, Quah Kim Lye has made a plea to the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) not to discipline the staff who displayed his photo instead of dead brother Kim Swee during a tribute before an S-League match.

SINGAPORE — Despite Monday’s mix-up at the Jalan Besar Stadium, Quah Kim Lye has made a plea to the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) not to discipline the staff who displayed his photo instead of dead brother Kim Swee during a tribute before an S-League match.

A one-minute silence was observed before the clash between Courts Young Lions and Hougang United for the 76-year-old ace striker, who died on Saturday after a long illness.

But instead of the elder Quah, a photo of Kim Lye, who last captained the Lions at the 1973 SEAP Games, was displayed on an electronic board to the chagrin of the 400 fans in attendance. It prompted S-League CEO Lim Chin to visit the wake on Tuesday at St Joseph Church in Victoria Street and apologise to Kim Lye.

“No, I am not angry,” Kim Lye told TODAY. “What is gone is gone. But please tell the FAS not to sack the person who put up the wrong photo because of me. I’ve already forgotten about it and am not pursuing this. The case is closed.”

But the 72-year-old said the FAS should have informed the family about the tribute. He added: “At least have the courtesy to tell us because some families may not like the one-minute’s silence, but we appreciate it.”

Kim Swee, whose funeral was held yesterday, was one of Asia’s most feared strikers during a 12-year career from the late ’50s to the early ’70s. He featured in the Asian All Star side, as well as the Singapore team that finished fourth at the 1966 Asian Games.

Daughter Bee Jin said her father was in remission from the colon cancer he had suffered 20 years ago, but died of liver complications. He had taken up coaching in the former Singapore Business Houses League in the 1970s after his retirement, and followed Singapore’s football fortunes until his death.

“He knew who the footballers were and was always interested when they played other countries. If he was not watching the national team he would be cheering the underdogs in other matches,” she said.

Kim Swee was the third brother of the Quah football dynasty that produced national players such as Kim Beng and Kim Choon (1950s), Kim Siak, Kim Lye and Kim Song. Sisters Theresa, Doreen and Rosa turned out for the women’s national team.

Kim Swee leaves behind wife Helen and two other children, Soon Hong, 49, and 40-year-old Soon Aun.

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