By Y.P. SIVAM
email@example.com Photos by RICKY LAI
|Ecstatic : The winners with their medals and certificates|
THE Selangor Amateur Swim-ming Association (SASA) has succeeded in developing new talent for the state.
This was visible during the two-day Selangor Junior age-group cham-pionships at the Darul Ehsan Aquatic Centre in Shah Alam recently.
In the past, the competition was for five age groups. However, SASA chose to organise the meet for only two categories — Group Four and Group Five — because of the high number of entries this year.
And the events for the Group One, Group Two, Group Three and Open categories were held separately during a three-day meet recently.
SASA vice-president Ong Jin Kooi, who is also the chief coach, said they had a hectic time last year when the three-day championships catered for all the age groups.
“We had almost 1,000 participants and the meet went on till late night. The technical officials were burdened and did not have much rest. So this year, we decided to divide the championships over two weekends. Almost 300 participants, aged eight to 10, took part,” he said.
“We are pleased with the response. The championships also served as a platform to identify potential swimmers for the National Age Group championships next month.”
In the boys’ category, Stingray Swimming Club’s Jayden Tan was voted as the overall champion in Group Five for winning five gold medals while Aow Yu Sheng of Sri KL Sharkies, with seven gold and one silver, was the overall champion in Group Four
|Off they go : The start of an event at the championships|
PADE Supershakz’s Lim Shun Qi was the overall champion in the girls’ Group Five. She won three gold and two silver. The overall champion in the girls’ Group Four was Royal Klang Club’s Angelina Chan, with five gold and two bronze.
Ong said the championships was meaningful as it had invited senior swimmers to serve as technical officials — as inspectors of turns, timekeepers and announcers.
“The idea was to provide them with organisational skills. There is a big shortage of technical officials. Being swimmers, they will understand the rules in swimming. We want them to continue serving as technical officials,” said Ong.
SASA recently initiated several programmes to further develop the sport. Besides organising the Selangor age-group championships, it also initiated the short course swimming championships last year.
Ong said they were pleased with the response for the short course championships and had included it in this year’s calendar.
“We will also be organising a long-distance championships in Decem-ber. There is a major shortage of swimmers for long-distance events.
“Most of the current juniors are concentrating on the 50m and 100m only. Our aim is to encourage them to take up the 200m, 400m, 800m and 1,500m,” he said.
“If we don’t organise these distances, then we may not have any representatives for the state and country in the future.”
Nestle Products sports marketing manager Ng Ping Loong said he was pleased with SASA’s active involvement in the promotion and development of swimming.
“There was a carnival-like atmosphere as parents came in full force to support their children. We are proud to be associated with SASA’s programmes.”
- Group Five: Jayden Tan (Stingray Swimming Club) — five gold.
- Group Four: Aow Yu Sheng (SriKL Sharkies) — seven gold and one silver
- Group Five: Lim Shun Oi (PADE Supersharkz) — three gold and two silver
- Group Four: Angelina Chan (Royal Klang Club) — five gold and two bronze
- Group Four (state representatives): Christy Teh (Shah Alam Club Selangor) — six gold and two silver.