Following in the footsteps of countrymen Joseph Schooling and Quah Zheng Wen, Singaporean swimmer Lionel Khoo is set to join the NCAA ranks in the near future. Having reportedly accepted a scholarship to the University of South Carolina, national record holder Khoo is awaiting NCAA eligibility to clear, but will be leaving this week to make his new training home in the Palmetto State with the Gamecocks squad.
“The NCAA has put in another request for me to have immediate eligibility. Otherwise, I will be eligible to represent South Carolina (only) in January 2019, although I will still be able to train with the team and to compete for Singapore,” Khoo told The Strait Times.
The breaststroking specialist had been studying at Singapore Management University while training under Gary Tan at the National Training Center (NTC), but the SEA Games bronze medalist states, “I have always wanted to experience living, studying and training in a different country and now that the opportunity has come up, I am looking forward to it.” (The Strait Times)
Khoo’s personal best of 2:15.27 in the LCM 200 breaststroke checks-in as the Singaporean national record, while he also holds the same distinction in the SCM 50 breaststroke and 100 breaststroke in times of 27.31 and 59.65, respectively.
Khoo will join fellow foreign swimmers such as Brazil’s Brandonn Almeida, Israel’s Itay Goldfaden, and Germany’s Nils Wich-Glasen on the Gamecocks’ roster.