Story by REDintern Chantal Liew. Photos courtesy of Singapore Swimming Association.
OCBC Aquatic Centre, Sunday, June 18, 2017 — The most thrilling event on the final day of the 13th Singapore National Swimming Championships — the Men’s 50-metre freestyle race — was taken by dark horse Teong Tzen Wei. The 19-year-old swam a speedy 22.90s which was just enough to pip gold medal favourite, Indonesia’s Triady Fazuy, to the wall by 0.05 seconds. Fauzy had to settle for the silver with 22.95s and Darren Lim took the bronze with a time of 23.04s.
Teong said that the 50m freestyle is technically one of the most demanding events and even the tiniest slip-up could cost him the gold medal. Going to Kuala Lumpur, he understood also that he cannot let his guard down for the SEA Games and must execute his race to perfection if he were to repeat his gold-medal performance this August.
“You know, I can’t take tonight’s race for granted. Every little detail counts. I’m sure all the other competitors, come SEA Games, will also be well-tapered and ready to swim fast so I still have a lot of work to do,” said the teenager, who lowered his personal best by three hundredths of a second.
Teong is just one of five Singaporeans who have gone below 23 seconds in this event. The others are Joseph Schooling (22.47s), Ang Peng Siong (22.69s), Darren (22.73s) and Russell Ong (22.97s).
There was some controversy in the Men’s 200m Individual Medley when Pang Sheng Jun was disqualified for an infraction on the backstroke leg. However, following an appeal and a review, the disqualification was overturned and Pang managed to keep his gold medal. He touched first in a time of 2 minutes 3.27 seconds, breaking Joseph Schooling’s meet record of 2:05.07.
It was Pang’s second fastest 200m IM time he has ever clocked, and was just 0.27s off his PB set in March this year.
Second place went to Thailand’s Ketin Nuttapong who clocked a time of 2:04.84. The last spot on the podium went to Darren Chua who swam a time of 2:06.86.
The women’s 800m Freestyle saw 13-year-old Gan Ching Hwee claiming the top spot on the podium with a time of 8:53.85. Despite her young age, she managed to hold off her rivals almost 10 years her senior. The 23-year-old Ressa Kaniadewi was a distant second with a time of 8:56.53 and Ammiga Himathongkom of Thailand was third in a time of 8:56.73.
Gan, who set national under-14 records in six different events over five weeks earlier this year, was 0.72s off her U14 mark of 8:53.13.
The junior swimmers will first be heading to the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas this coming July and will then head on to the World Juniors in Indianapolis in August. The seniors are meanwhile gearing up for the 2017 Kuala Lumpur SEA Games this August.
Women 800m Freestyle
1st Gan Ching Hwee — 8:53.85
2nd Ressa Kaniadewi — 8:56.53
3rd Ammiga Himathongkom — 8:56.73
Men 200m Butterfly
1st Quah Zheng Wen — 1:57.91
2nd Sajan Prakash — 1:59.10
3rd Ayman Klzie — 2:02.65
Women 200m Butterfly
1st Quah Jing Wen — 2:12.95
2nd Adinda Larasati — 2:16.49
3rd Azzahra Permatahani —2:17.84
Men 50m Freestyle
1st Teong Tzen Wei — 22.90
2nd Triady Fauzy —22.95
3rd Darren Lim — 23.04
Women 50m Freestyle
1st Amanda Lim — 25.76
2nd Quah Ting Wen — 25.79
3rd Cherlyn Yeoh — 26.65
Men 200m Individual Medley
1st Pang Sheng Jun — 2:03.27
2nd Ketin Nuttapong —2:04.84
3rd Darren Chua — 2:06.86
Women 200m Individual Medley
1st Ressa Kaniadewi — 2:17.85
2nd Christie Chue — 2:20.85
3rd Azzahra Permatahani — 2:21.65
Men 1500m Freestyle
1st Perwira, Aflah Fadlan — 15:36.79
2nd Sajan Prakash — 15:47.77
3rd Lertsathapornsuk Peerapat — 16:09.05