Surely a reprimand will do

Surely a reprimand will do
In Hot Water: (From right) Schooling, Ho and Teo allegedly returned to the Games Village drunk on Saturday morning.

INCHEON - He trained to be in peak form to take on some of the world's best butterfly sprinters at the Commonwealth Games in July.

And delivered silver in the 100m fly in Glasgow.

He recharged quickly, returned to the pool and worked hard through a much shorter but possibly even more intense programme, to get ready to take on the continent's best butterfly sprinters at the Asian Games in South Korea.

Once more, Joseph Schooling delivered, this time with medals in all three butterfly disciplines - gold in the 100 metres, silver in the 50m and bronze in the 200m.

His parents Colin and May may be nervous after it was reported yesterday that their 19-year-old son had allegedly returned to the Athletes' Village in Incheon, South Korea, drunk on Saturday morning after a night out, hours after the swimming programme had ended at the Asian Games.

They will wonder over any fallout, and any possible major distraction as he continues to work towards glory at the 2016 Rio Olympics.


Chef de mission Jessie Phua said in a statement that an investigation will be opened once the Games are over on Saturday.

There are some questions over how the whole incident has been handled - why was it not nipped in the bud and handled last Saturday, and why did it only come to light more than 48 hours later, and only through back channels?

It also throws up question marks over the strategy employed by Team Singapore officials to handle and take care of our athletes.

As for the errant trio, I believe Schooling, Roanne Ho and Teo Zhen Ren deserve only a stern warning for leaving the village without permission.

It is a rule, they should have abided by it, and a tough ticking off is necessary. Ho, 21, and Teo, 20, will not be in as much of the spotlight as Schooling, who is now Singapore sport's poster boy after his exploits in recent months finally saw the official stamp of world-class emerge next to his name.

After a gruelling few months where he has had to live and breathe swimming, either in training, or in competition against some of the world's top athletes, surely he deserves to let his hair down. And even party hard.

The intensity of it all, the expectations of friends, family, coaches, country, and Schooling's desire to deliver, both for himself and everyone else, meant pressure like never before.

He came through, he shone, and then wanted to let off steam.

Ho, Teo and Schooling did wrong by not getting an official green light to do so. Maybe the three swimmers snuck out of the village because they didn't think they would be allowed out on their own.

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