SINGAPORE - Eleven debutants were named in Singapore's gymnastics SEA Games squad of 15, who will represent the Republic at the May 12-23 competition in Hanoi.
Katelin Heng, 2022 rhythmic gymnastics national champion, was pleased to be given the chance to compete at the Games.
"I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to be part of Team Singapore in the upcoming SEA Games," said the 15-year-old CHIJ St Nicholas Girls’ School student.
"It has always been my dream to represent Singapore, and I will strive to do my best to bring glory to Singapore."
Singapore's gymnasts are also looking forward to the return of the team all-around competition in both women's and men's artistic gymnastics as there were no team events at the 2019 edition in the Philippines.
At the previous Games, Singapore's Sean Yeo won a bronze medal in the men's horizontal bar event.
Women's team captain Nadine Joy Nathan, 22, who will be making her third Games appearance, is looking forward to competing as a team and guiding her teammates who are making their debut.
"This year's SEA Games has definitely been one that we have been anticipating for a while, especially with the pandemic and Games' postponement. It is so exciting to finally be able to go out there and put in our 110 per cent for Singapore," said Nathan, who had won two team silvers (2015, 2017) and an individual all-around bronze (2015) at the Games.
"Although it wouldn't be my first Games, I'm thrilled to see my younger teammates finally get a chance to showcase their hard work, and I hope to be able to help guide and support them through their first major Games as their team captain."
Men's artistic gymnastics captain Terry Tay, who will be going for his fourth SEA Games and was part of the 2015 bronze medal-winning team, paid tribute to his teammates ahead of the competition.
The 28-year-old said: "Attitude is everything. They (teammates and coaches) show up every day putting in the hard work. They inspire and encourage me greatly, and I hope to do the same as we head into this Games together. Our team is excited and ready to go."
With this being the first major international competition for many gymnasts since the pandemic struck, Singapore Gymnastics president Dr Patrick Liew called for support for the athletes.
He added: "All the gymnasts have trained tirelessly, staying razor focused on keeping fit and improving their skills, even throughout the challenging conditions the pandemic has brought. They've sacrificed so much and worked extra hard to get back into competition form."