Orpington youngster learns vital lessons from Youth Olympics

Henry Choong. SPORTSBEAT.

Henry Choong. SPORTSBEAT.

First published in Other Sport

By Ben Baker in Nanjing

A medal might have eluded Henry Choong at the Youth Olympic Games, but the Orpington modern pentathlon starlet insists he will be better for his Nanjing adventure.

Despite arriving in China on August 12, Choong had to wait ten days to get his Youth Olympic Games assault underway.

And the long wait was perhaps partly to blame for a slow start on Friday as the 17-year-old finished the fencing ranking round down in 14th with ten victories and 13 defeats.

However, Choong blew that out the water 24 hours later as he won the swim with an impressive time of 1m57.21s.

But that was as good as it got for the Whitgift School pupil as finishes of 15th in the fencing and 19th in the combined run/shoot event left him 11th in the final standings.

“I was aiming to get in the top ten and I finished 11th, so I have almost achieved my aim and I am happy with that,” said Choong.

“My run was my best performance. My swimming, I always do well, so that was expected, but running isn’t always great so I pleased with how that went.

“I was actually aiming to get the world record for swim in modern pentathlon which is 1.55 and my best time is 1.56.

“I swam a 1.57 so I wasn’t quite there, but that’s OK, I did swim the fastest out of all of the other competitors.

“I started in eighth position in the run/shoot so I wasn’t expected to medal so I didn’t feel any pressure, I wasn’t nervous and just really enjoyed it.”

Choong’s Youth Olympic Games adventure didn’t stop there however as he was back in action on Tuesday in the mixed international team relay.

And while a medal once again eluded him and partner Laure Roset from France, Choong insisted it did little to dampen his mood.

He added: “I paired with the French athlete and didn’t really know her before this.

“So it was really good to spend some time with her and practice my French.

“It’s been great experience in Nanjing, there is nothing else quite like the Olympics and I’ve really enjoy everything about it.”

The British Olympic Association prepares and leads British athletes at the summer, winter and youth Olympic Games.

It works in partnership with sport National Governing Bodies to enhance Olympic success and is responsible for championing the Olympic Values.

For more information, visit teamgb.com

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