Always overshadowed by other local swimmers, and even his elder sister Agatha, Seb Wong took Philippine Swimming, Inc.’s 2021 PSI Swimming National Selection as an opportunity to show what he is capable of.
The lack of competition and the limited training did not stop the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde graduate from pushing himself.
“We didn’t really stop,” he said. “We just did what we can. When it was really bad, we just stayed at home. We did core, lung workouts, and prepared ourselves to get back into the water.
“And then we did the same things, same routine – gym, and then continuous training. So that really helped us in the competition.”
Hard work always pays off. Come last week’s meet, Wong showed up with impressive times that saw him win both the 50-meter freestyle (23.97 seconds) and the 50-meter butterfly (25.67 seconds). He likewise turned in a decent time of 54.07 seconds in the 100-meter freestyle for a fourth-place finish.
The QC Buccaneers Swim Club veteran said, “I was pretty happy with my performance. My 50 free and my 50 fly were really good, especially with my 50 fly. I was really surprised to get the 25 – I was not really expecting to get that.
“I was really disappointed at the 100 free because I went out too slow in the first 50, and wasn’t able to get as fast in the second 50 as I hoped. So, there’s room for improvement.”
Wong has committed to doing all of these things to reach an ultimate dream – to represent the Philippines on the international stage. With multi-titled wushu artist Agatha as a sister, the drive is definitely there.
“Yeah, of course,” the younger Wong said when asked on the matter.
“I want to represent the country in the SEA Games, in the FINA Championships.”
The 22-year-old swimmer attributed the drive to follow in his sister’s footsteps of carrying the national flag not as an inspiration, but mostly on another thing – competition.
“We always have this competitive nature, us siblings. And seeing her winning golds in the SEA Games and other competitions really motivates me to be better in my own sport.”
With things seemingly slowly falling into place, and Wong knowing where he is right now, the journey for a spot in the national team continues.
“This competition really helped us know where we are at the moment. So it is a really big help if we are aiming for the SEA Games,” the part-time model said. “For me, we obviously need more training. We found out where we were at. We just have to look at where we lack, where our weaknesses were, and know what our strengths are.
“Because when we know our strengths, weaknesses will follow so we can work on them.”
The three-day event has the support of the Philippine Sports Commission, the Bases Conversion and Development Authority, and the Clark Development Corporation.