Ho determined to make a big splash
Swimmer aiming to break her national mark in today's women's 50m breaststroke final
When Singapore swimmer Roanne Ho takes up her position on the starting block today, the only thing on her mind will be the clock.
She won't be racing against seven other swimmers who have similarly qualified for the Commonwealth Games women's 50m breaststroke final on the Gold Coast, Australia.
Her race, she told The New Paper yesterday, is one against time.
The 25-year-old remains determined to break the national record of 31.29 seconds that she set at last year's Kuala Lumpur SEA Games.
Yesterday, in the semi-finals which saw her clinch the last and eighth slot for today's event, she came just 0.02sec short, clocking a 31.31.
However, just the fact that she had made the cut was more than just a consolation prize, as she had not expected to qualify for the final.
Swimming in the second semi-final, she finished fifth among eight swimmers.
The eight-quickest times from the heats earlier in the morning were also faster than the 31.31 she managed.
Ho, who had clocked 31.61 in the heats, said: "I was in shock because I know this morning's time of 31.31 was slower than the eighth position, so I didn't expect to make the final at all when I saw my time."
Now that she has one more chance to become the first South-east Asian female swimmer to go under 31 seconds in this event, Ho is determined to make full use of the opportunity.
She said: "I'm very happy that I made the final but I'm still a little disappointed that I missed my best time by 0.02."
She is not thinking too far ahead though, which is why she won't be dreaming of a medal.
The fastest finalist is Alia Atkinson of Jamaica (30.53), followed by Sarah Vasey of England (30.75) and Australians Jessica Hansen and Georgia Bohl (both 30.92) .
Ho said: "I don't want to think about positions because I think that will just give me unnecessary pressure.
"But, of course, a medal would be amazing."
Ho also admitted that there are certain aspects of her race that she still needs to work on in order to break her own national mark.
She pointed out the last 15 metres of her race as one area that she needs to polish on in terms of technique.
Before she goes into the final at Optus Aquatic Centre today, Ho will be reviewing the video analyses to make sure she knows which other parts of her routine she can improve on.
Ho said: "I have nothing to lose going into tomorrow's final, so I just want to soak up all the experience, have fun and just race hard."