Singapore officially sends off her largest ever contingent to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games with 12 athletes taking part in a record number of six sports: athletics, archery, boccia, equestrian, sailing and swimming.
Archer Nur Syahidah Alim, wheelchair racer Norsilawati Binte Sa’at and long jumper Suhairi Bin Suhani were late additions into the final 12 and the debutants are excited to join their fellow TeamSG athletes to compete and represent Singapore at the Games.
“I feel great after getting the confirmation that I was selected for Rio, especially being the first female archer to represent Singapore at the Paralympic Games,” she said at the sending off reception that was hosted by sponsor BP Singapore.
Similarly for 19-year-old Suhairi, he is currently training four times a week in hopes of reaching his top form by the Games.
“I have two coaches, one jump technical coach and one speed coach. I have one weight training and three sessions on the track (every week),” said Suhairi.
“I am concentrating on my jump now so I am (focusing) more on the technical side like how I can improve my jump to the peak.”
(From L to R) TeamSG wheelchair racer Norsilawati, long jumper Suhairi Suhani and archer Syahidah Alim. PhotoL Sport Singapore
Norsilawati added that going for the Games is a dream come true for her and that she has been “really intensifying” her preparation — training five times a week followed by gym on Sundays.
She also credited her family and friends for the support that she has received.
“I’ve been wanting to qualify for Paralympics since I’ve been in the sport. They have been very supportive and are really excited about it for me,” said the 39-year-old.
“I’m really hoping that I will be able to clock a personal best, to better my timing,” she added.
The Paralympics contingent is also made up of boccia athletes Nurulasyiqah Bte Mohd Taha and Toh Sze Ning, equestrians Laurentia Tan, Maximillian Tan and Gemma Rose Foo, sailors Jovin Tan and Yap Qian Yin, as well as swimmers Theresa Goh and Yip Pinxiu.
The Paralympics will run from September 7 to 18 and flag bearer Yip Pin Xiu will be leading the contingent into Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
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