Zheng Wen overcomes flu to bag Singapore's first AYG gold medal

Zheng Wen overcomes flu to bag Singapore's first AYG gold medal
Local swimmer Quah Zheng Wen in the Boys' B Division 100m backstroke event at the Singapore Sports School on 25 April 2012.

SINGAPORE - Swimmer Quah Zheng Wen shrugged off a stomach flu on Monday to clinch Singapore's first gold at the Asian Youth Games (AYG).

The 16-year-old had arrived in Nanjing, China, on Thursday with a high fever and was resting in bed over the weekend.

Thankfully, he felt better on the opening day of the swimming competition at the Nanjing Olympic Sports Centre Natatorium to clinch gold in the 200m butterfly, clocking 1min 59.98 sec to pip South Korea's Jung Jae Youn (2:00.01) by a fingertip.

Thailand's Tanakrit Kittiya was third in 2:02.06.

Said the Singaporean, after the race: "It was quite scary. I went out quite hard to get a lead on the South Korean swimmer. And because I was sick, I really felt quite weak in the last 100m.

"He was really catching up on me and I was a little bit scared. So I just gave everything that I got."

Added his coach, Gary Tan: "This is something to really be proud of. Quah was really sick when he got here and couldn't even get out of bed."

Tan hopes that this win will give his charge an added confidence booster for his other events in the five-day meet.

Zheng Wen will compete in the 200m freestyle and 4x100m free relay on Tuesday. He is also slated for the 200m backstroke, 200m individual medley and the 4x100m medley relay.

Meanwhile, the nation's girls' relay squad of Samantha Yeo, Rachel Tseng, Hoong En Qi and Marina Chan took silver behind South Korea in the 4x100m freestyle event. Thailand were third.

Shooter Sean Tay clinched a silver in the boys' 10m air rife, with 205.6 points in the final, behind China's Wang Yuefeng (208.7). And fencer Chou Yu Yong won a bronze in the boys' sabre.

Singapore have one gold, two silvers and two bronzes so far.

ugenec@sph.com.sg


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