SINGAPORE: National swimmer Yip Pin Xiu won a gold medal in the women's 50m backstroke S4 (1-4) at the 2018 Asian Para Games on Monday (Oct 8).
Yip finished the race, held at the Gelora Bung Karno Aquatic Centre in Jakarta, in 1 min 2.09 seconds. She beat Kazakhstan's Gabidullina Zulfiya, who came in second at 1 min 17.72 seconds, and China's Feng Yazhu, who clocked 1 min 22.33 seconds.
In a media release, the Singapore Disability Sports Council said Yip's win was "all the more impressive" as the swimmer was competing against two other "less severely disabled" competitors.
"She was so far and fast ahead of the field that she came in some 15 seconds ahead of her closest rival," said the body.
Yip said the win came as a surprise, but that she was very happy with her time.
"I am very delighted, very happy and it came as a surprise because this is a mixed class but I am very happy with my timing," she said. "It’s a season best, so all the hard work and hard training has paid off. Being able to end this year off with a season best goes to show that training has been good.”
The swimmer's victory is also the first time she has won a medal in the Asian Para Games since the first edition of the Games was held in Guangzhou, China in 2010.
ADDS TO MEDAL TALLY
This is the second gold for the sport by Team Singapore after Toh Wei Soong finished first in the men's 50m freestyle S7 finals on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Singapore bowler Tan Swang Hee shared the third position with Thailand's Phisitthanakul Raiwin for mixed singles tenpin bowling (TPB10) at the Jaya Ancol Bowling Centre earlier on Monday.
Tan's result marks his second Asian Para Games medal, after he won bronze in the doubles event in Guangzhou.
“I am feeling very emotional because until now I still can’t believe it," said the bowler. "During the game, every shot is so important and I kept telling myself that I can’t lose, I have to make a good shot."
“He put his heart and soul into his performance and I am delighted that he has remained unfazed by the intense competition to bring home a well-deserved medal,” said Senior Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth Sim Ann, who was in Jakarta to support the athletes.
This brings the total number of medals for Singapore to three.
Meanwhile, Yip's fellow swimming Paralympian Theresa Goh finished eighth out of eight in the women’s 100m breaststroke SB6 (4 – 6) finals, while Games debutant Sophie Soon finished sixth out of eight, with a new personal best time of 1min 15.18s in the women’s 100m freestyle S13 (12 – 13) finals.
In tenpin bowling, Mohd Ismail Hussain finished fourth out of 12 with a score of 1,235 in the men’s singles TPB3 finals.
In archery, Nur Syahidah Alim beat her Thai opponent in the women’s individual compound round of eight and entered the quarterfinals, but eventually lost out to her Chinese opponent in a one arrow shoot-off tie-break.