2015 Asean Para Games: Day 6

Nget gives Cambodia swim joy

Nget Bo's bronze in the men's 50m freestyle S8 was Cambodia's first swimming medal at the Asean Para Games.
Nget Bo's bronze in the men's 50m freestyle S8 was Cambodia's first swimming medal at the Asean Para Games.

Cambodia's swimming contingent became buoyant cheerleaders last night at the OCBC Aquatic Centre, as they walked past the mixed media zone with huge smiles plastered on their faces.

Who could blame them? Earlier, in 31.32sec, their team-mate Nget Bo clinched a bronze in the men's 50m freestyle S8 final, finishing behind Singapore's Toh Wei Soong (30.27) and Indonesia's Guntur (30.45).

According to assistant coach Yi Sopheaktra, whose voice was hoarse from cheering his swimmer on, it was Cambodia's first swimming medal in the 14 years of the biennial meet.

Not surprisingly, the man of the hour was mobbed by his eight team-mates, his coaches, and the Singaporean volunteers attached to the team at the mixed zone.

Excusing himself from taking selfies, an elated Nget told The Straits Times: "I only trained for three months, but I knew if I swam my best, I could get a medal.

"I have to thank my coach Hem Lumphat and my team-mates for this achievement."

The 28-year-old, whose left arm is affected by polio, also plays sitting volleyball, but switched to swimming as the sport was not included in these Games.

Previously, he only swam on a recreational basis.

He said: "I will switch to swimming from now on. It suits my condition better and hopefully I can win more medals in future Games."

Chua Siang Yee

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 08, 2015, with the headline 'Nget gives Cambodia swim joy'. Print Edition | Subscribe