SINGAPORE, June 19 (The Straits Times/ANN): Asean’s fastest swimmer Teong Tzen Wei ( pic ) improved on his own 50m butterfly personal best to make it to his first World Aquatics Championships final.
On Saturday (June 18), the 24-year-old clocked 23.03sec to finish fourth out of eight swimmers in the second semi-final at the Danube Arena in Budapest, Hungary to qualify as the seventh-fastest overall.
Earlier, he had advanced from Heat 8 when he came in sixth out of 10 swimmers in 23.51. His previous personal best of 23.04 was set when he won at the event at the Hanoi SEA Games in May.
The final will take place at 12.48am on Monday (Singapore time), where he is the only Asian representative.
The fastest finalist is 2017 winner Ben Proud (22.76) followed by reigning world champion Caeleb Dressel (22.79). Italian Thomas Ceccon also clocked 22.79.
Teong has also become the first Singaporean since Joseph Schooling won a 100m fly joint-bronze at the 2017 edition to make it to the last eight of a final.
At that same meet, also held in Budapest, Schooling set an Asian 50m fly record of 22.93 which still stands.
Teong has enjoyed a meteoric rise in recent years. At the SEA Games, he set a blistering national 50m freestyle record of 21.93 en route to winning gold and becoming the first man from the region to go under 22 seconds. – The Straits Times/ANN
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