Amanda Liew (pic) targets new
Amanda Liew Jia Xin will be the first national athlete to test the waters of the 2010 Youth Olympic Games at Singapore Sports School today.The national swimmer is set to compete in Heat 2 of the Young Women's 50-metre breaststroke and will have to do her very best if she intends to challenge the other six contenders.
To prepare for the biggest event of her swimming career so far, 16-year-old Liew underwent intensive training for three weeks in Kota Kinabalu.
Though it was not up to national coach Eva Wong's satisfaction, having completed 12 training sessions per week Liew felt that she was ready to go. "I feel that my stamina has gotten a lot better and I believe that my times have improved as well," Liew told The Brunei Times on Tuesday.
The trip to Sabah enabled Liew to totally immerse herself in training, which she lacked due to exams.
It will be interesting to witness how far the Jerudong International School pupil has improved, for she will be up against one of the best athletes in the pool today.
Her main competition will come from the 2009 Asian Youth Games 50m breaststroke gold medallist Wang Chang of China.
Wang clocked 31.80 seconds to capture the title last July, at the very same venue that will be used for the Youth Olympic Games today. It is the third fastest qualifying time among the 25 swimmers competing in the event only bested by Italy's Carraro Martina (31.39s) and Brazil's Marchioro Alessandra (31.08s).
Liew's best time, also a national record, is 36.06s set at the 8th Asean Inter-Club Swimming Championships in April.
The most prolific swimmer in Brunei, Liew had been very busy prior to the tournament in and out of the pool. She sat for her General Certificate of Secondary Education exams as well as participated in Sukan Malaysia (Sukma), 2nd Asean School Games and the 9th National Sports Festival (PSK). At PSK in June, Best Female Athlete Liew swept top honours in all 14 events she competed in and broke three national records.
Though she did not capture a medal in Kuala Lumpur at the Asean School Games last month, Liew broke the 200m freestyle national record by clocking 2:18.43.
She currently holds a total of 12 national records.
A win even in her Heat today might be a bridge too far for Brunei's pool Queen. But re-writing her own record in the event is definitely achievable. All she has to do is beat herself.
Courtesy from Brunei Times