HANOI: Swimmer Quah Ting Wen was halfway through changing for her event when she heard the announcement for the women’s 200m butterfly finals.
Her younger sister was competing and she had to support her no matter what.
“I just ran out. I had to watch it because the 200m fly is special to my sister and it was really good to see her break the 2min 10sec mark and the SEA Games record,” she told reporters.
“So (it was) a great adrenaline rush before my event.”
But on a dramatic first day of the swimming competition at the My Dinh Water Sports Palace in Hanoi, it was the Quah siblings, not just Jing Wen, who stole the show as they combined for four golds for Singapore.
Competing in her only event of the day, older sister Ting Wen would successfully defend her 100m freestyle title. She is unbeaten in this event in four editions of the Games since the 2015 SEA Games in Singapore.
Thailand’s Jenjira Srisa-Ard finished second (56.62), while Miranda Christina Renner took third (56.95).
Zheng Wen would later also win gold in the100m backstroke, with a time of 54.83.
However, he was denied another in the 4x100m freestyle relay when the quartet of Quah, Joseph Schooling, Mikkel Lee, and Jonathan Tan would finish first but be later disqualified due to what national head coach Gary Tan would later describe as a “technicality”.
Vietnam would take gold, Indonesia the silver and Thailand bronze in the event.