SEA Games: Launching an all-out assault
Friday, 16 November 2012
TODAY, Sports (Pg 68)
SINGAPORE — The
chase for the Republic’s first SEA Games relay gold is now serious business for
the national men’s 4x100m team.
At the SEA Games
in Palembang last November, the quartet of Calvin Kang, Muhd Amirudin Jamal,
Lee Cheng Wei and Gary Yeo missed out on the gold by a whisker after a photo-finish
final with eventual gold medallists Indonesia.
Now, the team —
which also includes Muhammad Elfi Mustapa and Lim Yao Peng — are considering stopping
work or school for a year to train full-time so as to qualify for the 14th IAAF
(International Association of Athletics Federations) World Championships in
Moscow next August, before taking on the SEA Games in Myanmar in December. Elfi
is currently working as a trainee management executive at Seven Seas Oil Trading,
while the rest are enrolled in university and the National Institute of Education.
Yeo, 26, told
TODAY after the Singapore National Olympic Council Partner Athletes Programme
ceremony at Regent Hotel yesterday: “After the Olympics, we realised that
individually we can’t do much on the world stage. However, as a team, we are
closer to world standards. “Our new national record (39.58sec) at the Asian
Grand Prix this year is just 0.3 sec away from the qualifying time for the next
“After the world
champs, we want to win a gold medal at the SEA Games.
“We have talked
about it and want to train full-time next year. It is a big sacrifice but we
believe we can go further in the sport.
“If we don’t try,
we won’t know how far we can go.” Kang — who clocked a new personal best time
of 10.52sec at the Thailand Open this month — added: “We felt that this is the
best time for us as we are of the right age and our runners are strong.
want to win gold at the SEA Games, and hopefully this team will stick together
until the 2015 SEA Games here.”
While details are
still being worked out, tentative plans for the six include training full-time
with coach Melvin Tan for a year, or going on a six-month stint in Florida,
United States, to train under renowned speed and conditioning coach Loren Seagrave,
who has worked with NFL players and elite athletes like Olympic sprinter Justin
Athletic Association (SAA) told TODAY that they are happy to lend their support
to the relay team’s ambitions. Said SAA Vice-President of Training and
Selection C Kunalan: “Everyone in the association is very pleased and heartened
to hear about what they are trying to do. We will offer support and do whatever
“We will provide
support like training facilities and allowances for the runners, and are in
discussion with them on their plans moving forward.”
Source: TODAY, Sports (Pg 68), mediacorp