The Malaysian contingent was on a roll on the first day of competition in the 30th SEA Games in the Philippines after securing four gold, two silver and two bronze medals.
Wushu exponent Loh Choon How started the ball rolling with Malaysia’s first gold of the games in the men’s taijiquan event by collecting 9.68 points overall at the competition at the World Trade Center in Manila yesterday.
However, it was young dancer Lego Sam Lee Jek (photo, above) who stole all the attention after he delivered Malaysia’s second goal in the Boys' Break Dance event that took place at the Royce Hotel and Casino ballroom in Clark.
The 24-year-old’s triumph ended Malaysia’s 12-year wait for a medal in dancesport after Yong Kwok Leong and Gooi Yee Zhen’s bronze medal in the Rumba event in the 2007 Korat edition.
The polo team maintained their status, meanwhile as the regional powerhouse in the sport by retaining the gold for the third consecutive time, defeating hosts and favourites the Philippines 7-5.5 in a dramatic final played at the Miguel L Romero Polo Ground in Batangas, near Manila.
Malaysia was SEA Games polo champion in Korat, Thailand, in 2007, before defending the gold at home in Kuala Lumpur in 2017.
National ice-skater Julian Yee Zhi Yi was the last member of the contingent to deliver gold yesterday, after an almost flawless performance in the free skating event at SM Megamall, ending the competition with a total score of 202.64 points.
Malaysia’s two silver medals came via exponents Wong Weng Son in the men’s Changquan, and Fakrul Adam Fauzi Cruz in the men’s under-90kg Kurash, while the bronze medals were contributed by the men's and women’s floorball squad after defeating their respective opponents from the Philippines.
The host nation, meanwhile, has started the regional biennial sporting event with a bang, shooting straight to the top of the medal table with 22 gold, 12 silver and nine bronze, followed by Vietnam (10-13-9), while Thailand are in third spot with five gold, four silver and 10 bronze. Malaysia is in fourth.
The Malaysian contingent will continue their hunt for gold in the second day of competition today in several events, and they include wushu, shooting, pencak silat and artistic gymnastics.