SEA Games: Team SG's 5 high points of the 2017 Games

The Straits Times picked out the five most memorable moments for Team Singapore so far at the 2017 SEA Games.
The Straits Times picked out the five most memorable moments for Team Singapore so far at the 2017 SEA Games.ST PHOTOS: MARK CHEONG

The sporting arena has the unique capacity to bring into sharp relief the drama of human endeavour - win or lose, euphoria or heartbreak, strutting champions or doughty underdogs. The 2017 SEA Games have been no different in this respect.

The Straits Times picks out the five most memorable moments for Team Singapore at the Games so far:

1. Dipna Lim-Prasad breaks 43-year-old record in women's 400m


Dipna Lim-Prasad clinched the silver medal in the women's 400m race with a new personal best and national record. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

Chee Swee Lee's mark of 55.08 seconds set at the 1974 Asian Games was the longest-standing women's national record, only coming under serious threat this year when Lim-Prasad clocked a previous personal best of 55.10sec in June.

The 26-year-old shattered the venerable mark in some style during the SEA Games 400m race on Aug 24, crossing the finish line in 54.18sec to win the silver medal.

In doing so, Lim-Prasad also won Singapore's first 400m medal at the Games since 1975, when Chee won the title.

2. High jump, high drama


Michelle Sng had to wait almost a day for her medal ceremony. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

The high jump gold was Michelle Sng's. Then it wasn't. And then it was again.

Competing on the same day as Lim-Prasad, Sng had to wait a day longer for her medal ceremony, after a dizzying series of events that first saw the competition end in a tie between the Singaporean and Vietnam's Duong Thi Viet Anh, before the athletes were asked to return for a jump-off, which Sng lost.

A protest was then lodged by Team Singapore, and the jump-off result was reversed by an appeals jury, as Sng took home the Republic's first SEA Games high jump gold since Noor Azhar Hamid in the men's competition in 1975.

3. Swimming's new sprint king


Teong Tzen Wei celebrates winning the men's 50m freestyle. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

This year's swimming team were always expected to dominate at the Games, with the likes of Olympians Joseph Schooling and Quah Zheng Wen, and multi-SEA Games gold medallists Quah Ting Wen and Amanda Lim in the fold.

But there was still room for a new hero to emerge, as Games debutant Teong Tzen Wei stormed to victory in the men's 50m freestyle in a personal best of 22.55sec, just 0.08sec off Schooling's national record.

Said the 20-year-old: "It feels like I'm on another planet. It was beautiful, no words to describe it."

4. First-ever SEA Games golf team gold


Singapore's golf team celebrate their SEA Games win, the country's first gold medal for the sport since 1989. PHOTO: FACEBOOK/THE MINES RESORT AND GOLF CLUB

Not much had been expected of Team Singapore's golfers going into the SEA Games. No one had won a golf gold at the Games since Samson Gimson in 1989 (men's individual).

But first Marc Ong narrowly missed out on the individual gold by a single stroke, before he teamed up with Gregory Foo, Joshua Shou and Joshua Ho to strike gold at the second time of asking.

5. Jasmine Ser stages improbable comeback for 50m rifle gold


Jasmine Ser edged out Thailand's Ratchadaporn Plengsaengthong to claim gold in the 50m rifle event. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

The 26-year-old lay in fifth position after 30 shots in last Saturday's (Aug 26) final, trailing front-runner Nguyen Thi Xuan of Vietnam by 3.4 points.

But Ser was near-perfect from then onward, climbing to second after 10 shots in the standing position (99.2) and doing even better during the one-shot elimination rounds to edge out Thai Ratchadaporn Plengsaengthong for the gold by 451.2 points to 449.3.

All this, after losing the 10m air rifle title to team-mate Martina Veloso the day before on the last shot.