HANOI – Singapore’s men’s gymnastics team grabbed their first away medal and first for the sport at the 31st SEA Games on Friday (May 13).
The team of Terry Tay, Kaeson Lim, Mikhail Haziq Ghazali, Robin Sim, Zac Liew and Chong Jer Rong scored 297.650 in the Artistic team final at the Quan Ngua Sports Palace to win the bronze medal.
Hosts Vietnam clinched the gold after scoring 331.250 ahead of silver medallists the Philippines, who scored 301.600.
Captain Tay, 27, said he was on top of the world.
He added: “Regardless of the colour of the medal, it’s the feat itself. Four of the six team members are debutants so it’s really been a journey coming here and it’s a bonus, placing in the top three.
“The team put on a good show, it was not easy getting here balancing studies, national service or work. We rode the wave, did our best, trusted the process and now we’re here.”
Tay was also part of the team that won the bronze in the same event at the 2015 SEA Games on home soil but said the two moments could not be compared.
But he said: “Each competition has its own charm… I’m happy to have this team behind me to push together.
“It wasn’t a smooth ride but I think where some of us faulted, we picked one another up and that’s what sport is about.”
Debutant Haziq, 19, credited his teammates for boosting his spirit during the competition.
He said: “I think I did pretty well considering it’s my first SEA Games with the immense pressure. (The team’s cheering) helped me psych myself up and boosted my morale and mood to complete my routine. We’re all proud of ourselves for giving what we have and doing our best.”
The male gymnasts will next be in action on Sunday in the individual events, while the women’s team final takes place on Saturday.