[Swimming Record] Swimmer Khiew breaks longest standing national record held by Jeffrey

Khiew Hoe Yean wrapped up the year 2023 in spectacular fashion by wiping off the longest swimming national record in existence.

The 21-year-old put up a fabulous effort to clock 15:21.92s in the 17 and over men’s 1,500m freestyle final at the Queensland Swimming Championships in Brisbane yesterday to break a 32-year national record.

He won a silver but more importantly, erased the national record set by former Asian Games silver medallist Jeffrey Ong that has stood since 1991. Jeffrey swam 15:23.61s to take silver in the World University Games in Sheffield and it was the 14th fastest time in the world at that time.

The likes of Daniel Bego, Die Ung Manggang, Kevin Yeap and Welson Sim have also attempted to smash the national record in the longest distance swimming event over the last two decades but without success.

But Hoe Yean has now etched his place in history at Brisbane Aquatic Centre after setting a blistering pace from the start.

The Kuala Lumpur-born led for two thirds of the race before he was eventually overtaken by local swimmer Matt Galea. The 22-yearold from New South Wales Institute of Sport scholarship athlete won the race in 15:17.45s.

Another local Nick Sloman was placed third in 15:26.59s.

Malaysia’s Jayden Tan also dipped under the 16-second barrier in placing eighth in 15:41.89s.

Hoe Yean’s performance in setting a new personal best in the 1,500m freestyle will come as a relative surprise as he has not swum in the event for some time.

“I’ve broken the 32-year-old national record held by Jeffrey with a very fast time,” said Hoe Yean.

He was able to rise to the occasion as he had been focusing on the long distance swimming after the Cambodia SEA Games. He has been doing at least 10 sessions of training each week and covered a minimum of 6000m in each session.

“I was also motivated by the fact that there have been three world level swimmers at home Jeffrey, Alex Lim Keng Liat and Elvin Chia (who have medalled at the Asian Games and swam at the Olympics).

“I want to be the fourth and this is what motivated me to swim the 1,500m at this meet,” said Hoe Yean, who just missed out on a medal by 0.31s in his Asiad debut in Hangzhou after finishing fourth in the 400m freestyle final.

Hoe Yean now holds five individual national records, which also includes the 400m and 800m freestyle, 200m backstroke and 200m individual medley.

Penang-born Jeffrey also complimented Hoe Yean for breaking his last remaining national record.

“Congratulations for breaking my national record that stood for 32 long years. Well done,” tweeted the former national sportsman winner.

Another KL swimmer Mohd Dhuha Zulkifry also shone in Brisbane, winning gold for Malaysia in the boys’ 15 and under 200m freestyle final.

Dhuha clocked 1:51.96s to place first ahead of Australians Kai Gilbert (1:54.83s) and Hudson Sheehan (1:56.68s).

Current Olympic and world champion swimmers from Australia headlines the Queensland meet, which also saw strong participation from the Japanese national team.

Article Name:Hoe’s heroic show

Publication:The Star Malaysia


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