Asean Schools Games 2018

Best friends' temporary setbacks on the path to gold

Best friends Elena Pedersen (right) and Claresa Liau, both from Methodist Girls' School, won gold in the 100m backstroke and 200m breaststroke respectively at the Asean Schools Games in Malaysia yesterday.
Best friends Elena Pedersen (right) and Claresa Liau, both from Methodist Girls' School, won gold in the 100m backstroke and 200m breaststroke respectively at the Asean Schools Games in Malaysia yesterday.PHOTO: MINISTRY OF EDUCATION

Best friends and schoolmates each cope with disqualification dramas before their victories

Swimmer Elena Pedersen's hopes for the Asean Schools Games (ASG) 100m backstroke gold seemed to have gone up in smoke at the Darul Ehsan Aquatic Centre in Shah Alam yesterday when the two dreaded letters "DQ" flashed beside her name on the big screen after her heat.

"I was really shocked because I didn't feel like I had done anything wrong," said the 13-year-old, who started tearing up in distress.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 25, 2018, with the headline 'Temporary setbacks on the path to gold'. Print Edition | Subscribe