Tuesday, 8 July 2014 | MYT 9:47 PM
Lai Kwan aiming to repeat final feat in Glasgow
Chui Lai Kwan is the first Malaysian woman to make the final for a Commonwealth Games swimming event. — filepic
PETALING JAYA: Four years ago in New Delhi, sprinter Chui Lai Kwan made history when she became the first Malaysian woman to qualify for a Commonwealth Games swimming final.
And the 24-year-old independent swimmer aims to repeat the feat at the Glasgow Games from July 23-Aug 3 .
“To be honest, I really hope to win a medal. But it’s just not realistic as I know where I stand,” said Lai Kwan, who will compete in the 50m and 100m freestyle events.
“If I can perform to my very best and reach the final again that’s good enough.”
Lai Kwan admitted that she was shocked to be given a chance to compete in her third straight Games, having competed in Melbourne 2006 and New Delhi 2010.
“I didn’t expect to be named after failing to beat the qualifying marks,” said the former SEA Games gold medallist.
“Although I’m no longer with the national set-up, they (Amateur Swimming Union of Malaysia) are still willing to send me. So I’m really thankful and I hope to put up a good show.
“It’s awesome to be able to represent the country again, especially in a major multi-sports event,” added Law Kwan, who last represented Malaysia at the World University Games in Shenzhen, China, in 2011.
Lai Kwan now trains under former international Marilyn Chua.
“I think Marilyn’s programme really suits me. After training under her for almost a year, I’m now close to recording my personal best and I managed to qualify for the 2015 World Championships (in Kazan, Russia),” said Lai Kwan.
“I did my season’s best of 26.11 (50m freestyle) and 57.96 (100m freestyle) at the Malaysian Open in May. It has been very encouraging,” said Lai Kwan, who still holds three national records – 26.02 (50m freestyle), 57.55 (100m freestyle) and 1:03.91 (100m backstroke).