2017 SEA Games: Singaporean Showcase Of Schooling & Quah Siblings


Joseph Schooling continued his gold medal-winning campaign in Kuala Lumpur, snagging his 3rd top prize with the swimming competition now halfway through. After topping the podium already individually in the men’s 50m butterfly, as well as by being a member of Singapore’s 4x100m freestyle relay, the Olympic champion struck gold in his signature event, the 100m butterfly.

Clocking 51.38 tonight, Schooling outperformed the next-closest competitor by well over a second to take gold. Silver tonight went to Indonesia’s Triady Fauzi Sidiq, who led a minor medal sweep for his nation in a time of 53.03, followed by countryman Glenn Victor Sutanto‘s bronze medal-garnering mark of 53.25.

Schooling’s personal best and Singaporean national record stand at the 50.39 he registered en route to Olympic gold last summer in Rio. Most recently at the World Championships in Budapest, Schooling notched 50.83 for bronze behind America’s Caeleb Dressel and Hungary’s Kristof Milak who earned gold and silver, respectively.

Malaysia’s golden boy, Welson Sim, got the job done again in Kuala Lumpur, doubling up on his 400m victory earlier in the meet with a 200m freestyle gold tonight. Racing his way to a result of 1:47.79, Sim earned a new Games Record time. His outing tonight fell just .12 shy of his own national record of 1:47.79 set at both the Singaporean Age Group Championships, then matched at the Singaporean Age Group Championships in 2016.

Behind Sim in the event tonight was Vietnamese swimmer Huang Quy Phuoc, who notched a silver medal time of 1:48.07. Although he was dethroned from his 2015 gold at this same meet, Phuoc’s mark this time around was almost a second faster than his 1:48.96 that earned the top prize 2 years ago.

The remaining events went to Singaporean swimmers, who struck gold across the women’s 50m butterfly, men’s 200m backstroke, women’s 100m freestyle, as well as the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay. Remarkably, a set of 3 siblings would each earn gold before the night was through.

Quah Ting Wen took gold across 2 individual events this evening, first in the women’s 100m freestyle in a new Games Record time of 55.74. The former UCLA swimmer was able to out-touch Vietnam’s Nguyen Thi Anh Vien who finished just .01 behind in 55.75 for silver. This repeats the same result from the 2015 edition of these Games, but 2 years ago, Ting Wen’s time was 55.93, while Vien Nguyen’s was 56.05, so both women made improvements this time around.

For Vien Nguyen, tonight’s silver marks her 4th individual medal for these games after she already collected gold medals across the 100m backstroke, 200m backstroke and 400m freestyle events.

Ting Wen also got the job done for Singapore in the women’s 50m butterfly, where she earned a winning time of 26.83. She was the silver medalist in 2015 in 27.02, but the 25-year-old was able to crush a sub-27 second time to stand atop the podium this year. Runner-up status went to Thailand’s Jenjira Srisa-Ard who rocketed from 5th back in 2015 to a quick time of 26.94. Bronze went to Philippines’ Jasmine Alkhaldi who touched in 27.27.

Quah Zheng Wen, brother to the aforementioned Quah Ting Wen and also an NCAA swimmer for Cal, won last night’s 200m butterfly and took the 200m backstroke tonight in 2:00.09 for a new Games Record. He was able to beat teammate Francis Fong who took silver in 2:00.49.

To cap off the night, the Singaporean squad composed of Christie Chue, Ting Wen, Rachel Tseng and Texas A&M-bound Quah sibling Jing Wen raced its way to gold in the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay. Clocking a collective time of 8:10.41, the women earned a new Games Record. Jing Wen had already won individual gold in the women’s 200m butterfly, setting a new Singaporean national record in the process.

Through Day 3, Malaysia holds the overall medal lead across all sports by a sizable margin over Singapore. Malaysia has already collected 119 total medals, 50 of them gold, but still has a ways to go to meet its national target of 111 gold medals through all sports by the time the Games have concluded. This total would match the nation’s result from back in 2001 when Malaysia last hosted the Southeast Asian Games.

The medal table below includes ONLY the open water and pool swimming events through August 23rd:

Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Singapore (SGP) 11 2 3 16
2  Malaysia (MAS) 4 3 1 8
3  Vietnam (VIE) 3 3 3 9
4  Thailand (THA) 1 7 4 12
5  Indonesia (INA) 1 5 5 11
6  Philippines (PHI) 0 0 4 4

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3 years ago

Joseph’s swim was decent but he definitely got overshadowed by the Quah siblings who came after him. Quah Ting Wen was the star of the night, doing a 3 gold feat in one night She showed why she is a racer in all her three races – she was being chased hard by Nguyen in the 100 Free, but found something in her to touch first. She was behind in 90% of the 50 Fly but found something in her to touch first. She jumped in as the 2nd leg in the relay with a 0.42s deficit but erased that immediately with her plunge. The relay swim was very sweet considering I thought we’d lose this year – but Ting… Read more »

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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