PETALING JAYA: Diver Pandelela Rinong is turning out to be the latest diving sensation from Sarawak, following in the footsteps of Bryan Nickson and Elizabeth Jimie.
The 14-year-old bagged her second gold in the Asian Junior Aquatics Championships, winning the girls' Group B (Under-15) individual 10m platform event at the Senayan Swimming Complex in Jakarta yesterday.
Pandelela, competing in her first international championships, posted a total of 366.80 points from five dives to beat Taiwan's Bryna Tsai (340.20) to the gold medal.
On Tuesday, Pandelela partnered Cheong Jun Hoong to win the girls' synchronised 3m springboard event. The synchronised events are open competitions featuring divers from Group A (Under-17) and Group B.
Like Doha Asian Games bronze medallist Elizabeth and Beijing-bound Olympian Bryan, Pandelela comes from the SMK Tabuan Jaya.
She was roped into the national back-up squad early this year and had a one-month training stint in Kunming, China, recently.
Pandelela, who won three gold medals in the Sukma (Malaysia Games) in Alor Star last year, said that successes in her international debut were pleasant surprises.
“I made some mistakes but overall, I'm happy with what I have managed thus far. I hope to win more medals,” she said in a telephone interview from Jakarta yesterday.
Malaysia also bagged two silver and a bronze medals yesterday.
In the boy's Group B individual 3m springboard, Ahmad Amsyar amassed 354.80 points to take silver behind China's Wang Fen (409.65). Compatriot Ahmad Fakhri won the bronze with a score of 347.95.
The second Malaysian silver medal came from Bryan in the boys' Group A 3m springboard event.
Bryan, whose forte is the 10m platform, gave a good performance for 534.95 points to finish behind China's Wang Zihao (553.40). The bronze went to Hong Kong's Voon Wai Seng.
It was the second silver medal for the 17-year-old Bryan after his efforts in a partnrship with Fakhri in the boys' synchronised 3m springboard competition on Tuesday.