Rhythmic gymnast Kah Mun looking forward to Games debut
Teenager is eager for the good times to continue at the Bishan hall next month
Rhythmic gymnast Tong Kah Mun has enjoyed a successful 12 months at home and on the international stage.
She (above) experienced top-class competition when she represented Singapore at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow last July, and five months later, won one gold, two silver and two bronze medals at the Asean School Games, becoming the Republic's first winner in the individual all-around category.
The 17-year-old Nanyang Junior College student remained peerless here, winning the individual all-around title at the Schools National A Division championships in 2014 and defending her crown this year.
It has been an exciting time for the petite teenager, but she believes June's South-east Asia (SEA) Games will be an experience like no other.
"It is definitely more exciting since it's in Singapore," said The New Paper School Sports Star Award 2014 finalist, recently.
"It is almost certain that will have more friends and family watching and supporting us; my parents don't usually follow me overseas for competitions, so it is a very good opportunity for them to catch me performing at a major Games."
One can understand her excitement, as she will make her SEA Games debut on home soil.
While she has done well in school competitions, Kah Mun knows the SEA Games will be a different kettle of fish.
The youngster started gymnastics when she was eight and transitioned from artistic to rhythmic when she was 12.
She has only one wish for the Games, saying: "I want to perform a very clean and well-executed routine. I made some changes last December in the way I handle the different apparatus, and so far I have been quite comfortable about it in training."
Her fellow gymnasts in the rhythmic team event are also looking to put on polished performances at the Bishan Sports Hall, despite their relative inexperience.
Coach Zhu Xiaoping said: "About half the team were promoted from the junior squad, while one of them stopped for a year or two before returning to train for the SEA Games.
"It will be difficult for us to do well but we are confident because they have trained hard and we have invested quite a bit of resources on them."
The team have been training on a routine that was specially choreographed by a Bulgarian expert last November and the group went to the Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup in Portugal in March for experience.
Singapore Gymnastics vice-president Patrick Ho said: "They really opened their eyes to the world of rhythmic gymnastics and realised they needed to put in the effort in their preparations.
"This is SG50, we also have the home ground advantage... I've told them to go out and just do their very best.
"Hopefully, we can bring in our first medal for rhythmic gymnastics in the history of the Games."