Is she SAA's new foreign talent?

Is she SAA's new foreign talent?
Olivia Marsden, 14, was born in Singapore to British-Australian parents. Although her 400m personal best of 60sec is nothing to shout about, she is deemed to have the right physique and potential to succeed.

With her deep-set olive-brown eyes and long, flowing, brown hair, Olivia Marsden is not exactly your typical Singapore teenager.

But despite her very Caucasian features and Australian accent, the 14-year-old considers herself a Singaporean and wants nothing more than to represent the country at the 2015 SEA Games.

"It would be a dream come true to represent Singapore in 2015," said the Year 9 student at the Australian International School Singapore, who along with her parents, are all Singapore permanent residents.

"If they accept me, it means they have faith in me, and for me that's a big deal. I don't want to let them down. I want to give back to Singapore, make Singaporeans proud, and give them something to be happy about."

Born and raised in Singapore, Olivia could well become the Singapore Athletics Association's (SAA) latest foreign talent.

The SAA has submitted an application to the Singapore Sports Council to fast-track the 400m runner for Singapore citizenship under the Foreign Sports Talent (FST) Scheme.

The scheme was established in 1996 with the aim of increasing the competitiveness of Singapore on the world sporting stage and, at the same time, raise the standard of local athletes.

With a personal best of 60sec in the 400m, Olivia's times are nothing much to shout about. She is just over the National Under-15 record of 59.1sec and well over Chee Swee Lee's national, U-23 and U-19 records of 55.08.

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