Para sports: Team Singapore athletes eager to perform at Asian Para Games

The final group of Singapore's Asian Para Games athletes at Changi Airport before leaving for Jakarta, on Oct 4, 2018. ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA

SINGAPORE - The final group of Singapore's Asian Para Games athletes left for Jakarta on Thursday (Oct 4), with the 44-strong contingent aiming to deliver a best-ever showing in the third edition of the Games.

At the 2014 Games in Incheon, Singapore won one gold in sailing, one silver in swimming and two bronzes each in swimming and bowling. Sailing is not offered at the Oct 6-13 Games in the Indonesian capital.

Chef de mission Ali Daud, who left for Jakarta on Tuesday, had previously expressed confidence the team would do better than at their previous outing.

Singapore National Paralympic Council chairman Kevin Wong agreed, although he noted that competition this year is expected to be tougher.

"Every major Games are a stepping stone to the next level. Performance-wise, we hope everyone gets a personal best and if they win a medal, it's a bonus," added Wong, who is also president of the Singapore Disability Sports Council, at the Changi Airport on Thursday.

Singapore will be represented at the Games in 10 sports, with 27 athletes making their debuts. The shooters, swimmers and shuttler Tay Wei Ming formed the last batch who left for Indonesia on Thursday.

Three-time Paralympic champion Yip Pin Xiu is excited for the Games, and told The Straits Times: "We've been training so hard, hopefully the timings will reflect it.

"I'm most looking forward to start racing and to get to the village, to see what it has to offer. It's something really exciting during major Games because everyone is there, we're all in the team together and this time it's an Asian-level meet, so we meet our friends from all around Asia... it's going to be nice to soak in the whole atmosphere."

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