Swimmer Toh bags Singapore’s first Asean Para Games gold
Swimmer clocks Games record, confident of a good campaign in Kuala Lumpur
He had cut his training from seven days to a maximum of four days a week due to studies and the impending year-end exams.
But swimmer Toh Wei Soong sure passed his test at the Bukit Jalil National Aquatic Centre with flying colours yesterday, when the Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) student won Singapore's first gold at this year's Asean Para Games (APG) in Kuala Lumpur.
The 19-year-old clocked 1min 7.53sec to set a new Games record in the 100m S7 freestyle final, finishing more than five body lengths ahead of Thailand's silver medallist Kaweewat Sittichaiphonniti (1:14.89), while Indonesia's Suriansyah took bronze in 1:17.31.
Toh said: "When you compete, you always want to get the gold. I am satisfied with my performance, I felt that I have done my best. I went up against some challenging opponents. I'm grateful for the opportunity to be competing here.
"Having to juggle my academic commitments and my desire to do well at the Games has been very challenging but, thanks to the support of my parents, school and coaches, I can do pretty well at the Games."
FINE DAY AT THE POOL
Toh is no stranger to APG success, having won three gold medals in the men's 50m and 100m freestyle, and the 100m backstroke two years ago on home soil.
Those victories were in the S8 class. A lower number represents a more severe disability.
Toh was two years old when he was diagnosed with transverse myelitis, which affects the muscle nerves of his lower legs and restricts their use.
When you compete, you always want to get the gold. I am satisfied with my performance, I felt that I have done my best...I'm grateful for the opportunity to be competing here.Para swimmer Toh Wei Soong
Singapore had a fine day at the pool as they secured one gold, two silvers and one bronze.
With 29 golds and one bronze, Theresa Goh, the Republic's most bemedalled APG athlete, collected her first silver when she touched the wall in 1:42.64, behind Indonesia's Laura Aurelia Dind (1:30.27), in the women's 100m S6 freestyle final.
Danielle Moi also won bronze in the women's 100m S14 freestyle, while Benson Tan took bronze in the men's 200m S14 freestyle.
Meanwhile, cyclist Emily Lee clinched her third medal at this APG when she claimed silver in the women's 3,000m individual pursuit final.
Competing in the B class for visually impaired athletes, the 47-year-old teamed up with sighted pilot Sarah Tan to complete her race in 4:25.184 at the Nilai Velodrome in Negeri Sembilan, behind local favourite Nur Azlia Syafinaz (4:04.633).
Lee had won a silver in the women's sprint and a bronze in the women's kilometre on Sunday.
Her husband Jessen Ng partnered SEA Games men's omnium champion to take bronze in the men's 4,000m individual pursuit (B) final with a time of 5:03.425.
In boccia, Singapore also won a silver courtesy of the BC1/BC2 mixed team comprising Juni Syafiqa Jumat, Omar Azman, Neo Kah Whye, Ng Pei Fang and Jeralyn Tan, as well as a bronze via BC3 mixed pair Faye Lim and Toh Sze Ning.