PETALING JAYA: Teenager Khiew Hoe Yean was the toast of the Malaysian contingent when he made a historic seven-gold splash at the Asean Schools Games (ASG) in Semarang, Indonesia.
The curtains came down on the Games yesterday with Malaysia finishing third overall with a tally of 18 golds, 25 silvers and 34 bronzes.
And the 17-year-old swimmer stamped his mark as the most outstanding athlete for Malaysia in 11 editions of the ASG.
He claimed five individual golds in the 200m (1:53.25), 400m freestyle (3:59.94), 100m backstroke (58.16), 200m (2:07.51) and 400m individual medley (4:31.33).
Hoe Yean also bagged two more gold medals as the anchor for the 4x100m freestyle (3:32.77) and 4x200m freestyle (7:48.25).
The Kuala Lumpur lad, who was also the flag-bearer for the Malaysian contingent, claimed a silver in the 200m backstroke (2:08.01).
Hoe Yean, a Form Five student of the Victoria Institution, did not expect to end up contributing more than one third of the total gold medals for the country.
“There were some expectations as I was the most successful swimmer in my age group at the MSSM in March in Ipoh (nine golds).
“I swam good times and it will be a good build-up as I will compete at the World Youth Championships in Budapest, Hungary, next month,” said Hoe Yean, who made his mark by winning two gold medals in his Sukma (Malaysia Games) debut in Ipoh last year.
Swimming contributed the most for Malaysia. The target was to win five golds but they earned five more to finish with 11-7-6.
Athletics targeted 11 but only managed six. Table tennis was the third sport to contribute a gold through Amos Ling-Tan Yi Heng, who chalked up a 3-0 win over Singapore’s Shi Kexun-Lim Dao Yi in the doubles final.
Nine sports (athletics, badminton, basketball, silat, swimming, sepak takraw, tennis, table tennis and volleyball) were contested this time.
Malaysia were overall champions with 37-34-32 when they hosted the ASG last year.
Pagekeeper: Chung Chee Min