The final day of the 2022 ASEAN Para Games (APG) got off to a bright start at the Jati Diri Swimming Complex in Semarang.
Wong Zhi Wei doubled his gold tally for the Games as he blew the competition away to clock in at 27.22. He set a new national record and personal best for the men’s 50m freestyle S13 timed finals.
“I knew the competition was tough and the seed time was only separated by 0.3 or 0.4 seconds, It was more challenging than the usual 50m sprint which I’m not used to swimming. I felt more pressure this time because after winning the gold, I told myself maybe I can make it a double. So, this morning I felt a bit pressured but I still managed to control my emotions and just let it flow,” Wong said.
His journey to the 2022 APG was tedious as he struggled with surgeries, the pandemic, and exams, but he is happy with his performance and excited for the future.
“Two golds and one silver. It’s really a good result for me. I’m happy with how my strokes are feeling and with my results so far. I’ll be going for the Australian Short Course at the end of August so that’s another meet for me. But for now I’ll just go back to training and enjoy myself when I get back home,” Wong added.
Janelle Tong set a new national record and a personal best in the women’s 400m freestyle S10 timed finals when she clocked 6:28.82 to win the silver medal. Tong then competed in the women’s 50m freestyle S10 timed finals, setting a new national record and personal best at 40.53 but finished fourth out of four.
The sibling duo of Colin and Sophie Soon got in on the silver action as well. Colin clocked 33.67 for the men’s 50m breaststroke SB12 timed finals while his elder sister Sophie clocked slightly quicker at 33.57 for the women’s 50m freestyle S12 timed finals — a new national record and personal best.
Danielle Moi will be bringing home her third medal, making it a hattrick of bronzes. She timed at 30.46 to set a new national record and personal best for the women’s 50m freestyle S14 timed finals. Teammate Nicole Fu was in the pool in the same category but finished fifth out of five. Still, she managed to set a new personal best at 34.71.
Jeremiah Liauw did not start in the men’s 100m freestyle S6 timed finals.
Team Singapore’s para swimmers’ campaign in the APG 2022 was nothing short of remarkable as they won a combined total of 12 medals, split evenly among gold, silver, and bronze. The youthful quartet of Colin, Janelle, Nicole, and Darren, ends the Games no longer as APG debutants, but as hardened swimmers with this experience under their swim caps.
In boccia, the pairing of Toh Sze Ning and Aloysius Gan finished in style with gold for the mixed pair BC3. They fended off fierce competition from Thailand’s Akkadej Choochuenklin and Ladamanee Kla-han to seal the gold with a 3-1 victory.
“I would like to thank my coach (Chew Sze Qin) for her guidance and all the officials who have been supporting us in our journey. For me I feel awesome as the last gold medal for boccia was eight years ago with Nurul. She won BC3 Pairs with Nurulasyiqah Md Taha at the 2014 ASEAN Para Games. Now with Aloysius in his debut competition, we managed to defeat the Thais, who are strong opponents, and we a gold in the pairs. As the captain I feel very proud of Aloysius for his performance and how we worked together to achieve this goal,” said Toh.
Team Singapore’s women’s goalball team won the silver medal after being beaten by Thailand 7-1 in the finals at UNS Sports Center.
Another medal for Singapore as Eric Ting leaves Solo with a medal after receiving confirmation for the men’s singles TT1-2 table tennis event. He braved competition from Thailand’s Natthawut Thinathet to win the bronze.
Elsewhere on the chess boards in the Lorin Dwangsa Hotel Solo, Edwin Tan spent a busy final day going through six rounds of blitz chess. He faced off against opponents from the Philippines, Vietnam, and Indonesia and eventually finishing ninth out of 10.
In powerlifting, Lin Shuangchun waited eagerly to partipate in the men’s up to 80kg final. He lifted 100kg to finish fourth out of four.
Team Singapore had an exhilarating campaign at the 2022 ASEAN Para Games in Solo, Indonesia, collecting a total of 27 medals — seven golds, nine silvers, and 11 bronzes. But Singapore’s swimmer Wong Zhi Wei said it is not all about the medals.
“I felt better that I was able to beat my opponents than receiving the medals themselves. Over time the medals will lose their significance but the experiences and memories are most important,” he said.
Team Singapore’s para athletes will be home on the 7 Aug, after the closing ceremony at the Manahan National Stadium tomorrow.