100-year-old Montreal tennis player on what keeps him on the court
If you live to be 100 years old, what do you think your daily routine would be like?
How active would you be?
West Islander Claude Fung-A-Ling is 100 years old, and somehow he still plays tennis three times per week.
“I stopped competing when I was 80, but I kept on playing all this time,” he explained.
Fung-A-Ling says he’s been playing tennis for about 90 years. He’s a decorated player, having won his share of trophies.
“When I was about 47, I won the Quebec Senior Championships. Then I went to Ontario and played there, and I won that five times in a row,” he told Global News.
Even though his competitive days are over, he has no intention of slowing down. People at the Dorval Municipal Tennis Club are in awe of him.
“My first reaction is inspiration,” said club manager Raymond Lefebvre. “It’s not the fact he’s playing good tennis or bad tennis. It’s the fact he inspires passion.”
“It’s one thing to be alive at 100. It’s another to be hitting the ball at 100, isn’t it?” said Jay Bochner, who has played with Fung-A-Ling before.
“I never thought of reaching 100, I just lived,” said the centenarian.
Fung-A-Ling only stopped skiing at age 90. According to his daughter, he skied on his 90th birthday. As the story goes, Fung-A-Ling never bothered with chairlifts.
“It made sense to him to climb up the hill, because you would get more exercise,” explained daughter Margaret Fung-A-Ling.
So how does he do it? He believes his diet is one key aspect. He rarely eats red meat.
“When I was a youngster, I’d eat avocado on toast, not eggs or bacon or stuff like that,” he said.
“He has cabbage and spinach and broccoli almost every night,” said his daughter.
The 100-year-old says he never got into smoking or drinking, either.
“Neither, even as a youth I stayed away,” he said.
Love has helped too. He’s been with his wife for 67 years. He’s the one who takes care of her.
“I’m more busy now doing caregiver chasing, my wife needs that,” explained Fung-A-Ling.
His family and friends seem to be in a constant state of admiration.
“Everything seems to be enlightened when he touches it. I’ve never seen anything like that, to be honest with you,” said Lefebvre, who regularly plays tennis with him.
“I’m really proud of him,” said his daughter. “He’s been a model for our family. He inspires a lot of people.”
Fung-A-Ling believes that through science, he might even be able to get younger as he gets older.
“Longevity science has advanced. The aging process can’t only be slowed down, they’re talking about reversing it,” explained the trained engineer.
Fung-A-Ling says he will continue to play tennis until he can no longer walk on the court.
© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.