SEA Games: Youngest Quah steals the show as Jing Wen powers to 2 golds, 1 Games record

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Singapore swimmer Quah Jing Wen celebrates winning the women's 200m individual medley gold at the Hanoi SEA Games. (PHOTO: Sport Singapore/ Andy Chua)
Singapore swimmer Quah Jing Wen celebrates winning the women's 200m individual medley gold at the Hanoi SEA Games. (PHOTO: Sport Singapore/ Andy Chua)

SINGAPORE — The SEA Games gold rush at the swimming pool began for Singapore on Saturday (14 May), with the three Quah siblings helping to clinch four gold medals at the My Dinh Water Sports Palace.

Arguably it was the youngest Quah who stole the show, as Jing Wen stormed to two individual golds in the women's 200m butterfly and 200m individual medley (IM) - and set the Games record in the 200m fly in the process.

The 21-year-old clocked 2min 9.52sec - smashing her own Games record of 2:10.97 set in 2019 - to finish some distance ahead of Vietnam's silver winner My Thao Le Thi (2:14.20) and Thailand's bronze medallist Kamonchanok Kwanmuang (2:14.35).

Her timing improves upon her own national record of 2:10.01, set only last year at the Dolfin Fran Crippen Pro Swim Meet Of Champions in California.

About an hour after her 200m fly victory, Jing Wen swam in her second race and won comfortably again, clocking 2:15.98 in the 200m IM to hold off compatriot Letitia Sim (2:16.61) and Thailand's Jinjutha Pholjamjumrus (2:16.75).

Her elder sister Ting Wen also continued her dominance in the women's 100m freestyle, the 29-year-old clocking 55.60sec to win her fourth consecutive gold in the event. This was her 23rd gold at the SEA Games since her debut at the 2007 edition in Nakhon Ratchasima.

Thailand's Jenjira Srisa-ard was second (56.62sec), while the Philippines' Miranda Renner was third (56.95sec).

Quah Zheng Wen followed after his elder sister's win with also his fourth consecutive gold in the men's 100m backstroke event. The 25-year-old, who qualified only second-fastest in his pet event during the morning heats, performance when it mattered to win the race in 54.83sec.

Vietnam's Paul Le Nguyen earned the silver medal in 56.08sec, while Indonesia's Farrel Armandio Tangkas was third in 56.21sec.

There was controversy in the final race of the evening, however, when the Singapore men's 4x100m freestyle relay team - consisting Mikkel Lee, Quah, Jonathan Tan and Joseph Schooling - were disqualified after touching the wall first. Vietnam were eventually declared winners of the event.

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