Sat, 01 Apr 2000

Swimmer Richard wins silver at Asian meet

JAKARTA (JP): Indonesian swimmer Richard Sam Bera won a silver medal on Friday in his favorite discipline, the men's 100 meters freestyle, at the Sixth Asian Swimming Championships in Pusan, South Korea.

Richard clocked 51.37 seconds, behind Kim Min-suk of South Korea with 51.14 and ahead of Wu Nien-pin of China Taipei with 51.37.

The 1999 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games record holder swam 0.34 seconds slower than his best time recorded in Brunei Darussalam.

Friday's swim was also 1.07 and 0.71 seconds slower than his times in the World Short Course meets in Berlin and Paris respectively.

"I really wanted to win the gold but my time was not as fast as I hoped. Considering my preparations, where I had to divide my time between practice and work, the result is fine," Richard told The Jakarta Post in a telephone interview.

However, Richard was disappointed with the jury and the event organizers in general.

"The result on the score board said I had finished first, but I was not included in the medal ceremony because the jury said I had finished fourth. After we protested, I was awarded second place," he said.

"It's really disappointing. Pusan, as the host for the 2002 Asian Games, doesn't even have backup system, with a photo finish facility and backup timing."

Teammate Albert Christiadi Sutanto only managed to finish sixth in the men's 400m individual medley after clocking 4:36.44. Jin Hao of China grabbed the gold after clocking 4:22.79 followed by Kim Rang-hyun of South Korea with 4:24.50 and Tomonori Tateishi of Japan with 4:25.78.

In the men's 100m breaststroke, Elvin Chia Tshun Thau of Malaysia won the gold after finishing first with a time of 1:03.79. Cheng Hao of China took the silver in 1:04.70 and Sato Shigenori of Japan earned the bronze in 1:04.95.

China -- comprising of Deng Qingsong, Quyang Kunpeng, Zheng Shibin and Jin Hao -- won the 800m freestyle relay in 7:31.08, followed by South Korea with 7:31.96 and Japan with 7:41.46.

In the women's 100m freestyle, Han Xue of China clocked 56.28 to win the gold followed by South Korean Jang Hee-jin with 56.92 and Yevgeniya Yermakova of Kazakhstan with 57.03.

China earned three more gold medals on Friday. In the women's 100m breaststroke, Qi Hui finished first with 1:09.94 followed by Byun Hye-young of South Korea with 1:12.15 and Luo Nan of China with 1:12.36.

In the women's 400m individual medley, China collected another gold from Chen Yan with 4:46.09, followed by South Koreans Lee Jee-hyun Korea with 4:48.76 and Nam Yoo-sun with 4:48.88.

In the women's 800m freestyle relay, the Chinese team of Qin Caini, Zhang Yan, Zhan Shu and Chen Yan clocked 8:15.96 for the gold. Japan and South Korea earned the silver and bronze medals after clocking 8:22.24 and 8:23.05 respectively. (yan)