National jumper Matthew Goh narrowly missed out on breaking the national long jump record when he leapt 7.37m this afternoon at the Singapore Athletics Association 4th All-Comers Meet at the Gombak Stadium.
The 17-year-old Singapore Sports School alumnus, who is currently pursuing a sports science diploma with the Auckland University of Technology, missed Calvin Cheng’s year-old national open and junior records of 7.45m by a mere eight centimetres.
The distance is also 11cm short of the SEA Games qualifying distance of 7.48m.
Still, the distance will be a new personal best for Matthew whose previous PB was 7.23m. He will also be boosted by the consistency he showed today at the sandpit – all his four jumps were way over the 7m mark.
Apart from his 7.73m, he also cleared 7.29m, 7.22m and 7.13m in his other attempts.
Matthew’s near-miss marks the third time this year a jumper from Georgian coach Valeri Obidko’s stable has narrowly missed out on a national record.
In February, national women’s triple jump record holder Mariam Shazana cleared 11.63m at the SAA 2nd All-Comers Meet, just 3cm short of her 11.66m national mark.
Last month, national men’s triple jump record holder Stefan Tseng missed his record of 15.78m with his 15.74m attempt at the SAA 3rd All Comers Meet. The 18-year-old needs to clear 16.08m this year in order to qualify for the SEA Games.
However, Obidko is not worried by the spate of recent near misses.
In fact, the Singapore Sports School coach and SAA national jumps coach is quietly confident that his proteges will rewrite the national marks soon.
“They are good, hardworking and very disciplined athletes,” he said.
“They put in a lot of effort at training and so I know they will reap the results eventually. It is only a question of when.”
Mariam is scheduled to compete in the triple jump at the 4th All Comers meet tomorrow (Sunday) and the three jumpers will also be taking part in the Thailand Open later this month (25-26 April).
The Singapore Sports Fan would like to wish our national jumpers all the best and hope to see them in record-breaking action soon.
Yours in sport
Singapore Sports Fan