Joseph Schooling, 2 other swimmers warned by SNOC over incident at Asian Games

Team Singapore swimmers (from left to right) Joseph Schooling, Teo Zhen Ren and Roanne Ho. -- PHOTOS: AFP/ST FILE/TNP 
Team Singapore swimmers (from left to right) Joseph Schooling, Teo Zhen Ren and Roanne Ho. -- PHOTOS: AFP/ST FILE/TNP 

SINGAPORE - Three Team Singapore swimmers received a warning from the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) on Wednesday after a late night out at the Incheon Asian Games last month.

A panel comprising lawyer Jeffrey Beh, chairman of SNOC Athletes' Commission Yip Ren Kai, Lim Yii Hong, chief medical officer for Team Singapore at the 2014 Asian Games, and Jessie Phua, Team Singapore chef de mission at the Asian Games, met on Oct 24 to investigate the circumstances of the incident.

In an e-mail statement, the SNOC said: "The Panel concluded that the three athletes - Mr Joseph Schooling, Mr Teo Zhen Ren and Ms Roanne Ho - have infringed the Code of Conduct for Athletes and Officials at Major Games when they left the Athletes' Village without permission. A letter of warning will be issued to each of the said athletes for their actions."

Schooling, 19, Teo, 20, and Ho, 22 were believed to have returned to Team Singapore's housing area in the early hours of Sept 27, where they bumped into a group of Team Singapore athletes and officials who were about to leave the village for a flight home. The incident happened a day after the swimming competition ended.

It was also alleged that the three swimmers were intoxicated, but the Straits Times understands that while the three did have a few drinks, they were not drunk and were not behaving in a manner that was unbecoming of a national athlete.

The panel also recommended that team managers must remind athletes to adhere to the Code of Conduct at all times at future Games. The SNOC Athletes' Commission will participate in future team managers' meetings to share their experiences and to reinforce the importance of adhering to the Code of Conduct and other rules and regulations.

The incident was a black spot in what was otherwise a stellar Asiad for Schooling, who is training and studying in the United States. The butterfly specialist ended Singapore's 32-year wait for an Asian Games men's swimming gold medal when he won the 100m butterfly with a time of 51.76sec. He also bagged a silver in the 50m fly, and a bronze in the 200m fly.