TOKYO: On most of the nights prior to his debut at the Tokyo Olympics, Jonathan Chan was first student, then diver.
Chan, a student at the Singapore University of Technology and Design, had a final year project (FYP) to help his group mates with. In fact, the FYP presentation was on the very morning he would feature at the Games.
And while Chan was excused from the presentation, he made sure to pull his weight, even during his stay in Japan.
“Just now they (my group mates) told me, our presentation was quite good already, jiayou (all the best) for later,” he told reporters.
On Friday (Aug 6) evening, Chan finished 26th out of 29 divers in the men’s 10m platform preliminary round.
Chan, who was the first diver in Singapore’s history to make the cut for the Olympics, did not progress to the semi-final of the event as only the top 18 advanced. He scored a total of 311.15.
Held at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, the preliminary was won by China’s Yang Jian, who scored a total of 546.90.
Chan, who is the last Team Singapore athlete to compete at the Tokyo Olympics, began the preliminary round with a score of 51, and followed it up with a score of 54.4 for his second dive.
He then went on to record scores of 51.2, 47.6, 44.55 and finished strong with a 62.4 on his sixth and final dive.
“Technically the first five dives obviously could have gone better, but it wasn't really anything out of the ordinary in the sense … it's not something that came out of the blue,” he said.
“What my coach always says is that if competitions are like training, it is good enough … So if it's within expectation, which it was, I think I'm quite satisfied with it.”
Chan’s compatriot Freida Lim had competed in the women’s 10m platform preliminary round on Thursday, finishing last in a field of 30 competitors.
The 24-year-old had booked his berth at the Olympics in 2019 after he won the Men’s 10m platform final at the Asian Diving Cup in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
And after a long, hard slog to get to the Games, Chan is finally looking forward to an extended break.
“I think, if anything, I'm just quite relieved that it's over. It's been quite a long journey. With both like school, COVID-19 and training over the past two years, especially with the extension,” he explained.
“So I think now other than finishing my finals (which are in two weeks) … I’m just ready for quite a good break before I decide on anything else.”
After all that he has accomplished, Chan deserves it.
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