Thursday, August 4, 2011

Bego’s back in the pool

KUALA LUMPUR: Swimmer Daniel Bego, who made the biggest splash for Malaysia with five gold medals in the Laos SEA Games two years ago, has returned to the pool after undergoing surgery to his shoulders three months ago.

And Daniel is playing down his chances of repeating the five-gold act at the Indonesia SEA Games in Palem­bang in November.

Taking it easy: Daniel Bego has just started training after undergoing two surgeries to correct bone spur problems on both his shoulders.
Daniel underwent two operations in May to correct a long-standing bone spur problem.
A bone spur is a growth that forms on normal bone and can be extremely painful when it comes into contact with soft tissues or ligaments.

The long break from training has, however, made Daniel restless and the 22-year-old is glad to get back into the pool.

“I’m just playing around in the pool to see how the shoulders are coping with the strokes. It’s more likely that I will not be swimming in the SEA Games as I have not even started training seriously. But I don’t know what the plans are at the moment,” said Daniel, who broke four SEA Games records in Laos and was named the Best Athlete.

However, the Sarawak-born swimmer, who skipped the recent World Championships in Shanghai despite qualifying on merit for his pet freestyle and butterfly races, is bent on resurrecting his career by making a bid to qualify for the London Olympics next year.

“That (qualifying for the London Olympics) will be my main goal when I come back. That’s the reason why I went for the surgery in the first place,” said Daniel, who is also not taking part in the World University Games in Shenzhen later this month.

If Daniel is included in the SEA Games squad, swimming coach Paul Birmingham said he would probably be consigned to the relay events.
“There is no way he can get the gold medal with his current condition, especially as other swimmers have been clocking faster times in the individual events,” said Birmingham.

“Maybe, he can swim in the relays ... but still the main goal for him is the Olympics next year.”
In Laos, nine of the 15 gold medals won in aquatics came from the swimmers and all in record times. Daniel triumphed in the 100m, 200m and 400m freestyle; 100m and 200m butterfly.

Siow Yi Ting bagged three gold medals in the 100m and 200m breaststroke and 200m individual medley while Khoo Cai Lin defended her 400m freestyle title.


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