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AG2018: Largest ever Team Singapore contingent set to make a mark at 2018 Asian Games

18 August 2018
Lee Yaocheng

 

Team Singapore is aiming to reach new heights at the 18th Asian Games, whether it be on a personal or national level, as the competition officially begins on Saturday with a grand opening ceremony in Indonesia.

opening ceremony A general view of fireworks during the opening ceremony of the 2018 Asian Games. Photo: Sport Singapore

 

Having exceeded expectations and broken numerous records at recent regional competitions, the Republic will be looking to replicate its recent successes this year.

“Team Singapore has been on a positive trajectory - with many breakthrough performances in recent times. We are sending our largest contingent to the Asian Games, there will certainly be expectations for them to perform,” said Team Singapore’s chef de mission Lee Wung Yew, who stopped short of setting medal targets for his charges.

“What is most important is that they execute their plans as best as they can - be it going out for a personal best or a medal.”

“The competition field is world-class in many sports, to be able to compete at this stage is not easy and I am certain that our athletes will push for a strong performance for Singapore.”

opening ceremony The Team Singapore contingent during the opening ceremony of the 2018 Asian Games. Photo: Sport Singapore

 

The island-state set new benchmarks in the last two Southeast Asian Games, recording best ever home and away performances, and will endeavor to better their current Asian Games record set 12 years ago in Doha where they brought home a haul of eight golds, seven silvers and 12 bronzes.

This year’s Asiad will see 264 athletes representing Singapore across 21 sports in Jakarta and Palembang, with the sports of paragliding, ju-jitsu and sport climbing making their Asian Games debut.

Singapore has competed in every edition of the Asiad since it first started in 1951 and now holds the unique distinction of being one of the only seven countries to have done so.

While hopes are high and athletes are optimistic ahead of the Asiad, Singaporean gymnast and Asiad flag bearer Hoe Wah Toon had mixed feelings at first as this competition would be his last one.

 

opening ceremonyTeam Singapore flag bearer Hoe Wah Toon during the opening ceremony of the 2018 Asian Games. Photo: Sport Singapore

 

“I didn’t expect to make it this far in my career, and I came out of retirement mainly to help contribute to the team that qualified for the April Commonwealth Games, so qualifying for the Asian Games in the midst of that has been an amazing bonus for me,” the 29-year-old said.

“As this will be my final Games as an athlete, I can’t really describe how I feel. It’s both a happy and sad moment, but when I was told that I was selected to be the flag bearer it helped tip the scales.”

“I’m extremely honoured and thankful to be given the opportunity and am all ready to fly our country’s flag high at march-in. I’m proud to represent my country, my sport, and all the fellow Athletes who have worked so hard to get to these games.”

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Tags: Major Games

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