Pandelela, Jun Hoong win silver at Rio Olympics

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PETALING JAYA: Divers Pandelela Rinong and Cheong Jun Hoong delivered Malaysia’s first medal in the Rio Olympic Games, winning the silver medal in the women’s synchronised 10m platform event.

The Malaysian pair finished with 344.34 points to finish second to China’s Chen Roulin-Liu Huixia, who won the gold medal with a 354.00 total. Canada picked the bronze with 336.18 points.

With the win, Pandelela and Jun Hoong also become the first women ever to win silver for Malaysia at the Olympic Games.

The silver medal at the the Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is also an improvement for Sarawakian Pandelela, who won the bronze in the individual 10m platform event in London four years ago. That was the first medal of any kind won by a Malaysian woman, let alone in the sport of diving.

Pandelela and Jun Hoong stayed close to the Chinese pair across all five rounds of the event, and were joint-second after two dives. They dropped momentarily to third following the third dive but came back into contention for silver after the fourth dive.

“We are so proud to have won Malaysia’s first medal at this Olympics.

“There was pressure but we told ourselves to keep calm and focus on doing what we had been doing in training. I am so glad that our hard work has paid off,” Pandelela, 23, was quoted as saying by New Straits Times Online.

Meanwhile, the Perak-born Jun Hoong who had just missed out on a medal in the 3m springboard synchronised event with Nur Dabitah Sabri on Sunday came through yesterday, the portal reported.

“I told myself to forget what had happened in the 3m event and to focus on the 10m platform. Every day is a new day and my focus was on performing in the 10m platform,” Jun Hoong, 26, told NST Online.