Synchronised swimmers Soh and Yong add another gold for Singapore
Synchro swimmers Debbie and Miya win first-ever SEA Games gold in duet technical routine
After losing the SEA Games solo technical routine gold medal to Malaysia by just 0.0133 points on Thursday, Singapore synchronised swimmer Debbie Soh was not a happy camper.
And the 19-year-old responded in the best way possible as she teamed up with Miya Yong to win the duet technical routine at the National Aquatic Centre in Bukit Jalil yesterday.
This is the Republic's second gold at the Kuala Lumpur Games, and their first in the event at the SEA Games.
Soh told The New Paper: "I was not happy to miss out on gold by such a small margin on Thursday, so personally I was extra driven, and I was telling Miya before our routine that we must aim for gold."
Miya, the 17-year-old who won two bronzes on Thursday, added: "We are really happy to be able to win this gold medal for Singapore and we would like to thank our coaches and the Singapore Swimming Association for supporting us and helping us to win this."
Impressively, the youngsters put up a clinic of how to thrive under pressure in front of the judges and Malaysian supporters.
Before their turn, the golden girls sat down, faced each other, and helped each other focus by talking through their run-down.
Strutting out confidently as the sixth pair in the event, Soh and Yong then hit the water to the tunes of The McMash Clan's Swing Break.
"Be the rhythm" was the lyrical refrain and the duo demonstrated their class with clean and tidy moves.
When they emerged, they were awarded 75.1791 points (22.8000 for execution, 22.7000 for impression and 29.6791 for elements), sending a strong statement to Malaysia, who were the next pair to perform.
Gan Hua Wei, who had pipped Soh to gold in the solo technical routine event on Thursday, and Lee Yhing Huey did their utmost but, this time, there was no question who were the clear and deserving winners.
Malaysia's total of 74.3659 was good enough for only silver.
Indonesians Anisa Feritrianti and Claudia Megawati were third (68.9504).
Soh, who won the solo free routine gold on Thursday, said: "It feels great to win this gold with Miya because we have been training very hard together, and this is the first SEA Games gold Singapore have won in this event.
"We teamed up from October 2015 and, for important international competitions like this, we train almost seven hours a day throughout the week.
"So, it feels like all our hard work has paid off. We felt like it was our best performance together, and it showed through our personal best score.
"But we know that there are still two more events coming up and we will do our best to win as many gold medals as possible for Singapore."
The duo will be among the favourites for the duet free routine tomorrow afternoon, before they compete in the team free routine on the same day with teammates Gwyneth Goh, Hannah Chiang, Christine Mok, Shae-Lynn Tan, Ariel Sng, Rachel Thean and Vivien Tai.