Cool Jowen bags gold
Teenage wushu exponent claims individual win to add to team triumph two years ago
Two years ago on home soil, wushu exponent Jowen Lim won his first SEA Games gold medal.
Then only 16, Jowen triumphed as part of Singapore's duilian trio, together with Jesse Colin Adalia and Lee Zhe Xuan.
Yesterday morning, at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre Hall 5, Jowen won his first individual SEA Games gold medal in the men's optional daoshu and gunshu category.
He had entered yesterday's daoshu segment in the driver's seat, after finishing Sunday's gunshu portion with the top score of 9.68.
In front of his parents, brother and grandmother, he didn't disappoint, as he scored a 9.69 for a combined 19.37, which placed him ahead of silver medallist Achmad Hulaefi of Indonesia (19.35) and second runner-up Khaw Jun Lim of Malaysia (19.29).
Yong Yi Xiang, Singapore's other representative in the optional daoshu and gunshu, missed out on the bronze medal by just 0.01 after he scored 19.28.
Despite him being the only Singaporean wushu gold medallist at these Games so far, Jowen was ice-cool when he spoke to The New Paper after his win.
Asked what he did during the few hours after his victory, he said: "We didn't really go anywhere... After the medal ceremony, I stayed behind to (support) my teammates before they competed.
"Then we came back to the hotel, and later I'll have a physio (session)."
When asked if he was planning to celebrate later on, he chuckled and then said: "To me, there's nothing much to celebrate about.
"We already celebrated at the arena and took pictures."
Jowen, a second-year Sports and Leisure Management student at Republic Polytechnic, added somewhat surprisingly that he does not go into competitions with a medal target.
"Honestly, I didn't think about getting a medal," he said.
"My main goal is to just do my best, like what the coaches tell us to do in training.
"Maybe I'm different from some other athletes... but to me, it's never about winning - that is just a bonus.
"My goal is always to do the best I can to (execute) a perfect routine."
Although he looked extremely calm after his victory, Jowen said that the win was especially sweet because he was the only Singaporean wushu athlete to have won gold so far.
He dedicated his win to the Singapore Wushu Dragon and Lion Dance Federation and his family, who had travelled to Kuala Lumpur to watch him compete.
He said: "I hope my teammates can do their best and also achieve equally good results on the final day tomorrow."
Jowen's gold was Singapore's fourth medal in the sport in KL.
The brother and sister duo of Fung Jin Jie and Fung Hui Xin each won a bronze in the optional jianshu on the first day of competition on Sunday.
Zoe Mui claimed a bronze in the women's daoshu event after Jowen's win yesterday.