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 SEA Games: Tseng in tears after another fourth—place finish

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Join date : 2009-10-04
Age : 32

PostSubject: SEA Games: Tseng in tears after another fourth—place finish   Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:36 am

VIENTIANE — Hopes were high in the Singapore camp for the Republic’s first triple jump medal at the SEA Games in 38 years, but Stefan Tseng’s dream ended in tears yesterday, as the 19—year—old finished fourth in the final.

Up against arch—rivals V Kongnil and defending champion Theerayut Philakong of Thailand and Filipino Joebert Delicano, Stefan’s campaign got off to a jittery start as the triple jumper fouled his first two jumps, before leaping 16.03m on his third attempt to put him ahead of the field.

But Theerayut turned on the heat, jumping 16.51m on his final try to rewrite his own two—year—old Games record of 16.44m. Kongnil made it a one—two finish for the Thais, clearing 16.29m.

The battle for the bronze went down to the wire, as Tseng, who set a new national mark of 16.04m at the Negri Sembilan Open in July, and Delicano lined up for their final attempt. The Filipino cleared 16.12m to clinch third place after Stefan fouled on his sixth jump.

The loss was all the more heartbreaking for the Auckland University of Technology graduate, who lost the bronze medal to Russia’s Gennadiy Chudinov at the 2007 World Youth Championships on countback. The teenager broke down in tears, and had to be consoled by dad Paul and mum Ee Cheng, and girlfriend Valerie Pereira.

"I guess I was just too excited, as I really wanted to do well," said Stefan, who also finished fourth two years ago. "This feels like the World Youths all over again and I’m really disappointed."

Said national jumps coach Valeri Obidko: "I’m definitely disappointed too, but I’m still happy with his performance as he came close to his personal best." — TODAY

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