Sunday, 24 July 2016

The Star : There's no stopping Fu Kang as he breaks Sukma record


KUCHING: Top national breaststroke swimmer Wong Fu Kang of Johor has shattered yet another of Elvin Chia's long-standing record.

Fu Kang in action in the 100m breaststroke event at the Sarawak Aquatics Centre in Petra Jaya. - FAIHAN GHANI / The Sta
This time, it was Elvin's Sukma mark in the 100m breaststroke that stood for 20 long years.

At the Sarawak Aquatics Centre in Petra Jaya, Fu Kang defended his gold in the event with relative ease – touching the wall with his season best 1:03.05 to better former Asian Games bronze medallist Elvin’s 1:04.46 set at the 1996 Pahang Sukma.

Fu Kang’s effort, however, is way off his own national mark of 1:02.47 that he set on his way to winning the SEA Games gold medal in Singapore last year.

Still, it was a day to cherish for the Phuket-based swimmer, who has struggled to impress this year and failed to make the grade for the Olympics.

“It was a huge relief ... it’s been a while since I swam this fast,” said Fu Kang, who had also wiped off Elvin’s 15-year-old national record in the same event at the Malaysian Open in March last year. Fu Kang had clocked 1:02.56 to erase Elvin’s old mark of 1:02.59.

“I’m lost for words as to how to explain my recent loss of form. It could be due to my studies, I don't know. But today’s win has restored my confidence.
“It’s always a great honour to beat Elvin’s records. I'm hoping to break another of his record ... this time in the 200m breaststroke (on Thursday).

“If I can swim my personal best 2:18, I believe I have a shot at breaking another of his 20-year Games mark (2:19.17).”

Three more meet records tumbled on the opening day of the swimming competition.

FT’s' Christina Loh clocked 1:12.32 to win the women’s 100m breaststroke and rewrite her own mark of 1:12.41 set at the Pahang Sukma in 2012.

Tern Jian Han of Johor and Caroline Chan of Selangor also joined in the record-breaking party on their way to capturing the men and women’s 50m backstroke.

Jian Han posted 26.57 to shatter Ian James Barr’s four-year-old mark of 26.86 while Caroline clocked 30.18 to erase her previous effort of 30.34 also set in 2012.

Selangor bagged four of the eight gold medals on offer yesterday. Apart from Caroline, their other golds came from Yap Zheng Yeang (men’s 200m freestyle), Rosalind Pang (women’s 200m freestyle) and Nadia Adrianna Redza (400m individual medley).

Tia'a Faang Der bagged Johor’s third gold of the day in the 400m IM.

Eight more gold medals are on offer on Sunday.

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