Gilchrist eyes sweep for his events
Gilchrist strikes gold in men's English billiards yet again; says he's peaking for last two events
For the second straight night, Singapore's Peter Gilchrist stood tall at the OCBC Arena, winning the gold medal in the men's English billiards event in emphatic fashion yesterday.
The Singaporean ace steamrolled past Myanmar's Aung Htay 3-0 and won his fourth consecutive SEA Games gold medal in the event, continuing his winning streak which started from 2009.
Speaking to The New Paper after his win, he said: "It was pretty straightforward, I know that sounds confident of me, but I'm playing really well now, and someone's going to have to play really well to beat me.
"After I dropped the first frame in the semi-finals, I felt like I wasn't going to miss again and, after that, I did whatever I wanted to do with the balls, and it continued into the final."
Earlier in the day, the 47-year-old, who won the WPBSA World Championships in 1994, 2001 and 2013, defeated another Myanmarese, Kyaw Oo, 3-1 in the semi-finals.
By his own admission, he won the English billiards singles (500 points) gold on Sunday at only "65 per cent".
With last night's win, Gilchrist said he is peaking at the right time for his last two events - the men's billiards doubles and team events.
The billiards doubles is one event he's hoping to finally add to his list of accolades, after winning three bronzes at the last three editions of the Games.
"I'll be at 100 per cent for the doubles and team finals. I need to be at that level for my teammates."
At least, after his semi-final and final wins, Gilchrist will have a psychological advantage over the Myanmarese pair of Oo and Htay, who beat him and then-teammate Lim Chun Kiat at the 2009 SEA Games in Vientiane, Laos.
The Singapore pair had to settle for the bronze.
With home support, Gilchrist believes it's time to set the record straight.
He said: "I feel like I can definitely win the (billiards doubles) gold now. We have the home support, and I'm in top form.
"The home crowd has been tremendous. When you feel a bit under, the crowd wills you on and it gives you the extra motivation.
"It's such a great atmosphere out there. I heard someone shout during the game, 'Bring it home', and I will."
Third-time lucky for Malaysian Thor
Thor Chuan Long finally broke his personal curse when he won the gold medal in the men's snooker singles final after beating Myanmar's Ko Htet 4-2 at the OCBC Arena last night.
The 27-year-old Malaysian won the bronze in the event at the last two editions but made the breakthrough yesterday.
Cutting an exhausted figure after a two-and-a-half hour battle, Thor told The New Paper: "I honestly have no words to say, except that I am so happy. This is my dream.
"I've spent more time training since the last two SEA Games. Every day, I train for six to eight hours and it feels so good to finally win."
The Malaysian supporters who travelled to Singapore to back their snooker hero played a big part in his victory.
At one point, Thor had to tell them to calm down.
"That was very nice of them, but I actually started to feel the pressure once they started cheering every time I was at the table. It was like they expected me to win.
"But I tried not to let the pressure get to me, took it slow and focused on my own game."