SEA Games: Singapore swimmer Chantal Liew upgraded to second after Thai silver medallist loses medal for doping

Chantal Liew (centre) at the Asian Open Water Swimming Championships 2017 in Kuala Lumpur. Photo: ST FILE
Singapore's 3m springboard synchronised duo of Ashlee Tan (left) and Fong Kay Yian have been awarded the SEA Games gold after Malaysian gold-winning diver Wendy Ng Yan Yee was disqualified for failing a dope test. PHOTO: SINGAPORE SWIMMING ASSOCIATION

KUALA LUMPUR (BERNAMA) - The SEA Games Federation (SEAGF) on Monday (Dec 12) confirmed that Singapore had gained one additional gold and one more silver medal as it named the three athletes that had failed doping tests at the recent Kuala Lumpur Games.

It revealed that Malaysian gold-winning diver Wendy Ng Yan Yee and two Thai athletes - Nurisan Loseng (silat) and Benjaporn Sriphanomthorn (swimming) - failed the B sample test conducted recently.

SEAGF president Tan Sri Tunku Imran Tuanku Jaafar said their victories and the medals would be withdrawn.

"They will be disqualified in all events and the medals will be taken away from them," he told a press conference. "If they won gold, the winner of the silver medal will be announced as the winner and will be given the gold medal."

Ng's official disqualification had been widely expected as she had been named by Malaysian media months ago. She will be stripped of the gold medals in the women's 3m springboard individual and 3m springboard synchronised event with Nur Dhabitah Sabri.

Nur Dhabitah now claims the individual title while the synchronised gold goes to Singapore pair Ashlee Tan Yi Xuan and Fong Kay Yian, the Republic's first Games diving title since the 1973 South-east Peninsular Games (precursor to the SEA Games).

Benjaporn loses two silver medals, in the 10km open-water swimming and 4x200m team relay event.

Liew will be awarded the open-water silver while the Philippines have been promoted to second in the 4x200m.

Said Liew, 19, in a statement to The Straits Times: "It's unfortunate to hear what happened, and while it is good news for me and for Singapore, I've got to keep working really hard to prove myself in the next few competitions to come."

Both Tan and Fong expressed similar sentiments. "It is nice to win a gold for Singapore, but we need to continue to improve ourselves to be able to achieve gold on our own merit in future Games," said Tan, 17.

Nurisan, who helped her team win gold in the women's team artistic event, has to give way to the silver medallist from Vietnam.

All three athletes had tested positive for the banned substance sibutramine by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) at its laboratory in New Delhi on Oct 11. Sibutramine is an appetite suppressant which is commonly found in weight-loss supplements.

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