School sports

School Sports: Leaping and bounding ahead of competition

Sachin Esan in action during the B Division boys' pole vault finals at Bishan Stadium. He led a 1-2-3 sweep for Hwa Chong Institution yesterday, winning gold after clearing 4m.
Sachin Esan in action during the B Division boys' pole vault finals at Bishan Stadium. He led a 1-2-3 sweep for Hwa Chong Institution yesterday, winning gold after clearing 4m.ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

SSP student Tia sets A Div long jump record; RI's Wei Yu defies medical advice to win boys' gold

At the far end of the Bishan Stadium yesterday - away from the supporters' stands and loud public-address system - Tia Louise Rozario quietly broke the A Division girls' long jump record en route to winning her Schools National title.

The Singapore Sports School (SSP) student jumped 5.66m to beat Lynette Lim's record of 5.43m, set in 2015.

The 16 year-old is no stranger to success.

She won a silver at last year's Asean School Games in Chiangmai.

Last month at the 12th SEA Youth Athletics Championships in the Philippines, she clinched gold and set her personal-best jump of 5.85m.

Yesterday, she had little trouble breaking the event record, jumping 5.50m on her fourth attempt.

She went 0.16m farther with her final effort to easily clinch the title.

Hwa Chong Institution's (HCI) Tania Koh claimed silver with a jump of 5.17m, while Victoria Junior College's Daphne Kwok won bronze (5.11m).

When asked of how she felt after breaking the record, Tia merely shrugged.

She said: "I've done better jumps, like the personal best mark I did last month.

"I felt mediocre today, especially since it was so early in the morning. But I'm satisfied because I came back from last month's competition and I didn't want to push myself too much."

Nevertheless, she dismissed the notion that she took it easy.

"If miracles happen to me when I jump, it could happen to someone else when they jump too," she said. "So I didn't let my guard down and focused fully instead."

While she was dominant, it was a far closer affair in the A Division boys' competition.

Raffles Institution's (RI) Toh Wei Yu edged out Meridian Junior College's Lin Yu En by a centimetre, leaping 6.69m to claim the title.

The 18-year-old fended off stiff competition from athletic powerhouses HCI and SSP despite spraining his ankle almost a week earlier.

Despite being told to rest, he was not going to let the injury ruin his final year in the RI athletics team.

He said: "My physiotherapist told me to rest for a week, without knowing that I had a competition.

"But we trained all year for just one day and I couldn't let all the efforts slip away. I wanted to end on a good note, and I did."

HCI pole vaulters dominated the boys' B Division, sweeping the podium to repeat last year's feat.

Sachin Esan came in first as he vaulted 4m, while Kyler Ong (3.9m) and Low Jun Yu (3.8m) finished second and third respectively.

The C Division boys' triple jump saw Kapil Arnav of Victoria School win gold after he jumped 12.58m.

HCI claimed the silver and bronze medals as Ooi Wei Chern and Ryan Tew jumped 12.14 and 12.09m respectively.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 07, 2017, with the headline 'Leaping and bounding ahead of competition'. Print Edition | Subscribe