Swimming: Roanne Ho makes women's 50m breast stroke semi-finals at Commonwealth Games

Singapore swimmer Roanne Ho training at the Optus Aquatic Centre, venue of swimming competitions for the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.
Singapore swimmer Roanne Ho training at the Optus Aquatic Centre, venue of swimming competitions for the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN

GOLD COAST, Australia - Singapore swimmer Roanne Ho has qualified for the Commonwealth Games women's 50m breast stroke semi-finals on Thursday (April 5) evening, after placing 11th among 24 swimmers in the heats at the Optus Aquatic Centre.

The 25-year-old clocked 31.61sec to finish fourth in the first of three heats, which was won by Jamaica's Alia Atkinson (30.98sec).

Following the race, Ho watched intently the results of the other two heats, and looked visibly relaxed after she found out that she made the next round. Only the top 16 swimmers will make the semi-finals, and the top eight from that round will make the final on Friday (April 6).

Ho said: "I was shivering a little before I started because I usually wet my suit before races, I forgot that it was an outdoor pool and the wind was blowing.

"I was a bit nervous too, and a bit rushed at the start, I got into the rhythm in the middle, and towards the end I started to panick a bit because I was hoping that I would make it to the semi-finals.

"But I feel good about the swim because it was my fastest-ever swim in the morning. I always swim faster at night, and I will swim my hardest to make it to the finals."

Meanwhile, para-swimmer Han Liang Chou was eighth in the men's S14 200m freestyle heats in 2min 25.09sec and has qualified for the final on Thursday evening, while Darren Lim clocked 24.86sec in the men's 50m butterfly heats and placed 20th among 56 swimmers. He did not make the last 16.

The 19-year-old said: "The swim was not bad, it was just 0.1 second off my personal best in the morning in an outdoor pool. This is not my pet event, but will set me up well for my other events later on."

South Africa's Chad le Clos topped the men's 50m fly heats in 23.53sec, while reigning world champion Benjamin Proud of England - who swam in the adjacent lane to le Clos in Heat 7 - was disqualified.

Le Clos said he didn't know what happened to Proud, but added that he will miss him in the final.

Le Clos said: "I'd prefer to have Ben in the race and come second to somebody who's competitive with me."