The ACS Connection
as the 23rd SEA
Games in Manila
Living up to its
reputation for producing outstanding sportsmen, ACS has once again
risen to the occasion with a fine crop of athletes qualifying for
the 23rd South East Asia (SEA) Games in Manila from 27 November to
05 December 2005.
Of the ten swimmers
selected to represent Singapore, seven were from ACS! This
is not at all surprising considering that ACS is the premier
institution for swimming and has constantly been producing many of
Singapore’s top swimmers over the past few decades. The ‘magnificent
seven’ heading for Manila are Mark Chay, Gary Tan, Leslie Kwok,
Lionel Lee, Marcus Cheah, Bryan
Tay and Mark Tan; the other three in the Singapore team
were from Raffles Institution.
making their way to Manila are Jason Goh (Chess), Zhang
Jin (Shooting), Teo Heng Bin (Karate) and Poh Seng
Song (Athletics). At the time of writing, the Singapore Amateur
Cycling Association has short-listed Low Ji Wen from ACS
(Barker Road) Should Ji Wen be selected, he will make
history as Singapore’s youngest SEA Games cyclist.
In addition, three ACS
staff will be among the Singapore officials in Manila; Mr Chan
Chee Wei is the Team Manager of the Athletics team, Mr Lau
Kum Weng is the Assistant National Coach of the Waterpolo team,
while Mrs Yoon Lay Beng is an umpire for the badminton
matches. Leading the Singapore Team as Chef-de-Mission is Mr Oon
Jin Teik, CEO of the Singapore Sports Council, an ACSian and
former Olympic swimmer. And to top it all, we understand that the
Minister for Community, Youth & Sports, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan,
an ACSian, will also be present at the Games.
It looks like we will
see a strong ACS presence at the Manila Games - from athletes to
coaches, managers and officials. We wish them all the very best in
The Best Is Yet To Be!
The Magnificent Seven
Swimmers who qualified
(ACS Independent Class of 1998 & ACJC Class of 2000)
A multiple SEA Games
Gold Medalist and record holder, Mark’s impressive swimming career
has earned him many honours, including Singapore Schools Best
Schoolboy of the Year 1999 & 2000, SSC/SNOC Sportsboy of the Year
2000 and SSC/SNOC Sportsman of the Year 2001. Mark has participated
in many major swimming competitions, among them the SEA Games (1997,
1999, 2001 & 2003), Asian Games (1998 & 2002), Commonwealth Games
(1998 & 2002), World Swimming Championships (1999, 2000, 2001 &
2005) and the Olympics (Sydney 2000 & Athens 2004). At the World Cup
2000, he did well to be in the Finals of the 100m Individual Medley,
50m Backstroke and 100m Backstroke events.
the Manila 2005 SEA Games, Mark will be competing in three
individual events (including the 100m freestyle and 100m backstroke)
and three relays. According to him, “It’s going to be a tough
schedule for me as effectively, I will be swimming 9 events and
there are heats in the morning as well. But I am comfortable with
coming home with medals”.
Mark is thankful that
ACS played an important role in his formative and most important
years of my swimming career. “With a rich tradition in dealing with
national swimmers, ACS knew what to do and how to do it in order for
me to juggle my time and succeed in both my studies and sport”, he
Barker Road Class of 1989 and ACJC Class of 1991)
A late starter, Leslie
began serious training for competitive swimming at the national
level only in 1994 when he was 21. Since then, he has represented
Singapore in many international competitions, including the SEA
Games (since 1997), the World Swimming Championships (since 2001)
and the 2000 Sydney Olympics. He has bagged several bronze medals at
various international meets, and a silver at the 2001 SEA Games.
Leslie, who will be
competing in the 50m Freestyle event at the 2005 Manila SEA
Games, reckons that his chances for a medal are good. He is grateful
to former Singapore swimmer Ang Peng Siong for guiding him along his
swimming career and giving him the confidence to achieve greater
things. “Being an ACSian also helped me in many ways, as the school
was very supportive of sports and groomed me to be an all-rounder,
and not just focused on studies”, Leslie said.
(ACS Independent Class of 2002 & ACJC Class of 2003)
Lionel’s big break came
when he got into the 2003 SEA Games through a wildcard entry.
However, this meant that he had to choose between his ‘A’ Levels and
the SEA Games, and he chose the latter.
to Lionel, “The ACJC Principal, Mrs Kelvyna Chan, made my choice so
much easier when she encouraged to me to chase my dreams, as she
believed that I should still be able to make it out there in life
without my ‘A’ Levels. ACS (Independent)’s History and SS Teacher,
Mr Joseph Wong, was the other person who was most supportive and
helped shape my life. He has been a friend and mentor, and was
particularly helpful, especially during my ‘O’ Level year”.
“I am thankful for the
ACS brand of education that made a gentleman out of me. Even though
I have left school, the ACS Spirit lives on”, Lionel added.
Lionel will be competing
in the 400m Freestyle and 400m Individual Medley in Manila 2005 SEA Games. He is hopeful for a medal in the 400m Freestyle.
(ACS Independent Class of 2004)
Marcus has been swimming
competitively since Primary 3, but it was not until he switched over
from backstroke to freestyle that he began to make his mark on the
international scene. He recently participated in the 2005 FINA World
Championships in Montreal, Canada, and did well at this year’s
Singapore Open to claim the Top Male Performer honours after bagging
three Golds and a Silver, and breaking the 800m & 1,500m Freestyle
Marcus will be putting
in his best effort when he competes in the 400m Freestyle event in
Manila. According to him, “ACS always taught me to be the best I can
be, and I will be pushing myself beyond the limits to win a medal. I
always remember Mr Jason Chin telling me that to be top swimmer, you
first need talent and secondly you must work on it the old-fashioned
way by training hard. I have followed his good advice and have not
looked back since”.
Independent Class of 2004)
Bryan, who has competed
in many Age Group Championships in the region, will be participating
in his first SEA Games in Manila. He reckons that he stands a good
chance for a medal in the 100m Freestyle and 200m Freestyle
individual events. He also believes that Golds for the 4x100m and
4x200 Freestyle relays are a strong possibility as the Singapore
team, which comprises all former ACS boys – Mark Chay, Marcus Cheah,
Gary Tan and himself, is rather strong.
Glad to be representing
Singapore, he said, “I have my coach and mentor, Mr Ang Peng Siong,
to thank for motivating and pushing me on to qualify for the Manila
2005 SEA Games. I am also very thankful for the support I
received from my teachers in ACS (Independent), for going out of the way to help me keep up with my studies”.
(ACS Independent Class of 1998)
A graduate of Brigham
Young University, Gary hopes to pursue a Masters degree in Sports
Science after he completes his national service. He has represented
Singapore in many international swim meets, including the SEA Games
(where he is a multiple medalist since 1997), the Asian Games, and
the 2000 Sydney and 2004 Athens Olympics.
At the Manila Games,
Gary will be competing in the 200 Backstroke, 200 Butterfly, 200m
Individual Medley, 100 Butterfly, 4x100m Freestyle relay, 4x200m
Freestyle relay and possibly the 4x100 Medley relay. He reckons that
his best chance for a Gold medal is in the 200 Butterfly and the
relays, but whether Gold or not, he would be happy if he achieves
personal best times for the events he is competing in.
owes his success to the caring and understanding teachers in ACS. “I
am grateful to them for motivating and instilling confidence in me. They
were a great inspiration and taught me not only what was supposed to
be taught in class, but also gave me valuable lessons on how to live
life to its fullest potential”.
Mark Tan Jinwen
(ACS Independent Class of 2002)
Mark has represented
Singapore in numerous international meets, including the 11th FINA
World Swimming Championships 2005 in Montreal, the FINA Swimming
World Cup 2004/05 in Melbourne and the 2004 Commonwealth Youth Games
in Bendigo, Victoria, Australia. He is also the first Singapore
swimmer to beat the 50m Breaststroke qualifying mark for the 2006
Commonwealth Games in Melbourne.
When asked about his
medal chances at the Manila 2005 SEA Games, the young lad
pledged to do his best for Team Singapore. “I give it my best when
I compete in the 100m and 200m Breaststroke events, and will not let
Singapore down”, he said.
“I would also like to
place on record my appreciation for Mr Chan Chee Wei, ACS (Independent)’s
Health, PE & Recreation Director, for standing by me and giving me
his full support during my years in ACS (Independent)”, he added.
Bin Kicks His Way To Manila!
ACS (Barker Road)’s Teo Heng Bin
from Secondary 4A3 will be donning national colours at the Manila 2005
SEA Games when he represents Singapore in Karate (Individual Male Kata).
No newcomer to this competitive and challenging sport, Heng Bin has
been active in Karate for the past six years. He won the Silver Medal
(Individual Male Kata) at the 3rd Commonwealth Karate
Championships 2005 in Wellington, New Zealand, and was second in the
Pesta Sukan Championship 2005 (Senior Male Individual Kata) and first
in the Singapore Karatedo Federation Open Invitational National
Inter-school 2005 (Boys’ Individual Kata, Upper Secondary).
We salute his efforts and wish him all
the best in upcoming SEA Games!
& Zhang Jin Aim
For More Medals
Jason Goh, a
Secondary 4 ACS (Independent) student, will be participating in his
second SEA Games in Manila. At the 2003 SEA Games in Vietnam, he won a
silver medal for Chess after beating three chess grandmasters along
the way – a laudable feat considering that he was in Secondary 2 then.
Zhang Jin, a former
ACS (Independent) student, has been selected for the Air Rifle
He too was at the 2003 Games
in Vietnam, where he bagged a bronze
medal for the 10m Air Rifle Team event.
Low Ji Wen Gains International Attention
Low Ji Wen from Secondary 4B1, ACS (Barker Road), has been in
the limelight recently. He is currently short-listed to represent
Singapore at the
SEA Games, and would make history as Singapore’s youngest SEA Games
cyclist should he be eventually selected.
his commitment and achievements in cycling, Ji Wen is the sole
Singaporean selected by the world cycling body, the Union Cycliste
Internationale (UCI), to participate in a special cycling training camp
designed to spot and nurture young international talents. Organised by
the UCI in conjunction with the Oceania Cycling Federation, the camp
will be held under the auspices of top cycling coaches in Sydney,
Australia, where good performance there may lead to a future
invitation to the World Cycling Centre in Aigle, Switzerland.
Ji Wen started competitive cycling only
July 2004. His talent and commitment soon became apparent, when he won
all the Singapore Amateur Cycling Association (SACA) races up to the
National championships, and was crowned the 2005 Singapore Men’s
Junior National Champion in the Under-19 category. He also
represented Singapore in the international 4-day cycling competition
(Tour of Egat) in Thailand – posting the best time for the national
team, which won fifth position.