HANOI: The national swimming squad finally succeeded in bringing home medals at the 31st SEA Games with a gold escaping its grasp at My Dinh Aquatic Centre here today.
National young swimmer, Khiew Hoe Yean raked in two silver in the men’s 400 metres freestyle and men’s 200m backstroke to cheer up the swimming camp after coming out empty handed since the competition began on Saturday.
Hoe Yean clocked 3 minutes and 52.03 seconds in the final of the men’s 400m freestyle which saw the host swimmer Nguyen Huy Hoang taking the gold and setting a new SEA Games record (3:48.06s) while the bronze went to Singapore’s Lim Jun Wei in 3:56.68s.
The Kuala Lumpur-born swimmer later almost snatched the gold in the 200m backstroke but lost out to Vietnam’s Nguyen Tran Hung who clocked 2:01.58s. while Hoe Yean was just 0.09 of a second behind.
Indonesian swimmer Farrel Armandio Tangkas won the bronze in 2:01.80s.
Speaking to reporters, Hoe Yean admitted he was disappointed for missing the gold for Malaysia.
“It is a bit disappointing as I expected something better but I had given it my best shot. It was tough for me as it was my first day swimming in the individual events. Maybe the effort I put into the 400m freestyle affected me (in the 200m backstroke), I am not sure,” he said.
Meanwhile, Phee Jing En who won the gold in the women’s 50m breaststroke in the 2019 edition in the Philippines failed to defend her position when she came out fifth in a time of 32.43s in the final.
Singapore representative Letitia Sim grabbed gold with a time of 31.43s, Jenjira Srisa-Ard of Thailand silver (31.63s) and another Singaporean athlete Christie Chue won the bronze after recording 32.10s. - Bernama