Thursday, November 10, 2011

Benjamin Franklin’s quote inspires veteran Yi Ting in her comeback

ALEMBANG: On her left arm is a tattoo of a quote by famous Ameri­can scientist, inventor, statesman and philosopher Benjamin Franklin: He that can have patience can have what he will.

It is a virtue top Malaysian breaststroke swimmer Siow Yi Ting holds close to her heart as she charts a comeback, with the London Olympics as her objective, after a two-year lay-off to complete her studies.
“I’m quite an impatient person and this tattoo reminds me to slow it down and not get angry if things don’t go my way,” said Yi Ting, who is making her sixth SEA Games appearance.

“I got the tattoo last year and, in a way, it is a reminder of the challenges I faced on returning to the pool. There was a lot of work to do but it should be rewarding if I can regain my winning form.”

An eye on London: Siow Yi Ting’s target in Indonesia is to qualify for next year’s Olympic Games.
Yi Ting was on top of her game in Laos two years ago where she splashed her way to three gold medals in record time in the 100m and 200m breaststroke as well as the 200m individual medley.
Yi Ting took time off after Laos to complete her studies at the University of Arkansas in the United States and graduated with a BA in Arts and Sculpture. She returned home in August to train at Bukit Jalil under national coach Paul Birmingham.

“I’m definitely in better shape than when I started a few months back. It’s my aim to qualify for the Olympics from here,” said Yi Ting, who has spent the last few months improving on her techniques and building up her endurance again.

Yi Ting, who will be 26 next month, is the most experienced swimmer in the Malaysian squad. She has delivered at least one gold medal at the SEA Games since making her debut in KL 2001. The only one she missed was Manila 2005 where she took time off to focus on her exams.

“I feel so old, as if I’ve been swimming forever,” she said. “It’s good that there are youngsters like Christina Loh and Erika Kong (also breaststrokers) coming through and ready to take over from me,” said Yi Ting.
The SEA Games competition is also a FINA-approved qualifying meet for the Olympics and Yi Ting will become the first four-time female Olympian for swimming if she makes the cut.

That would truly be the crowning glory of a distinguished career spanning over a decade.
The 17-strong Malaysian swimming squad arrived in Palembang yesterday along with the national shooters and sepaktakraw team.


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