Team Singapore had surpassed all expectations and delivered a record 84 gold medals at the 2015 SEA Games on home soil.
With that performance in mind, Sport Singapore's chief executive officer Lim Teck Yin yesterday expressed his hopes for another historic showing in Kuala Lumpur.
"We hope to have our best overseas SEA Games showing ever," he said. "We had 43 golds in Korat (in 2007), and this time we're going to try and make sure we do better than that."
Singapore are sending their largest away contingent of 569 athletes to compete in 35 of 38 sports offered, with the Republic not represented in weightlifting, volleyball and sepak takraw.
While traditional goldmines such as swimming, sailing and table tennis (23, 10 and six golds won in 2015 respectively) will be counted on to deliver the goods, Lim is confident of a strong display from the whole contingent.
"Our athletes have been preparing very hard for these SEA Games, and they know that they are standing on the shoulders of the last Games that we hosted," said the former national water polo player, who won six SEA Games golds between 1985 and 1995.
He also spoke about the encouraging start enjoyed by the ActiveSG sports academies yesterday, on the sidelines of the final day of the Junior NBA Singapore national basketball training camp at the Heartbeat@Bedok.
"We've been very happy with the fact that more and more Singaporean parents have been bringing their kids to join our programmes," he said. "For example, our football academy has expanded now to 10 centres."
ActiveSG also has academies for basketball, tennis and badminton, with plans to eventually launch up to 25 academies and clubs.