Swimming: Roanne Ho, Benedict Boon stake claim ahead of next year's SEA Games

Roanne Ho in action for the women 50m breast stroke at the OCBC Aquatic Centre on Dec 20, 2014. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE
Roanne Ho in action for the women 50m breast stroke at the OCBC Aquatic Centre on Dec 20, 2014. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

National swimmer Roanne Ho broke the women's 50m breaststroke meet record at the Singapore National Swimming Championships (SNSC) on Saturday. The 22-year-old, who competes for Swimfast Aquatic Club, clocked 32.99sec to lower the record of 33.01 set by Samantha Yeo last year.

It was also comfortably inside the South-east Asian (SEA) Games qualifying mark of 33.39 and puts Ho in the frame for an appearance at the biennial Games on home soil.

Long-distance specialist Benedict Boon also highlighted his credentials ahead of the biennial Games. The 18-year-old stopped the clock in the men's 1,500m freestyle in 16min 3.63secs which broke the meet record of 16:12.35 set by Marcus Cheah in 2005.

Boon also beat 2011 SEA Games gold medallist Teo Zhen Ren, 20, who finished third in 16:11.34.

Said Teo, who was battling a running nose: "I was really slow out there and couldn't handle it any more. I hate it when I lose and I haven't lost for a long time but that acts a motivation to train harder."

The SNSC is one of three qualifying meets designated by the Singapore Swimming Association. Swimmers can also qualify through time trials in February and at the Singapore National Age Group Swimming Championships in March.

The fastest two qualifiers for each event will earn berths at the SEA Games next year.