Malaysia continue chase for gold medals at Asean Para Games 2017

KUALA LUMPUR, 21 Sept 2017:

Malaysia won eight gold medals in athletics yesterday to make it 22 gold medals after three days of competition at the Kuala Lumpur Asean Para Games at National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

The gold rush began with Muhamad Ashraf Muhammad Hisham – who ran the men’s T46 1,500m in  4: 24.73s for a new Asean Para Games and Asian Para Games record, to erase the  4: 27.90s set by Isidro Bildolosa of the Philippines in 2005.

The other gold medals were won by Shamli  Waidi in men’s  F36 / 37  javelin, Bajury Ladis in men’s F35 shot put, Siti Noor Iasah Mohamad Ariffin in women’s T20 400m, Umi Syuhadah Idris in women’s F37 discus and S. Thavanesvaran in men’s  T42 / 43/44 100m.

Ahmad Solihim Mohd Nor won the seventh gold medal in men’s T45 / 46  100m while Umi Syuhadah made it eight gold medals after winning the women’s F37 javelin.

The decision to change his entry from the track to the field event proved to be lucky for Bajury Ladis after he bagged the gold medal in the men’s shot put F35 (Cerebral Palsy).

In event held at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium here, the 43-year-old from Limbang, Sarawak emerged as champion by throwing a distance of 7.51m.

Trailing behind with silver medal was Bruneian Alihan Muda who threw a distance of 7.33m while another Malaysian athlete, Sabarudding Bacho had to settle for bronze with a distance of 6.71m.

“Although I have won five gold medals in in 100m, 200m, 400m, 4x100m and 4x400m in the 2005 APG  in the Philippines, I decided to change my entry due to age factor as I am already 43 years-old,” said Bajury.

Indonesia lead the medals tally with 31 gold medals in athletics, followed by Malaysia with 22 gold medals and  Thailand are third with 12 gold medals.

Driven by poverty, sprinter S. Thavanesvaran had to virtually run the race of his life to seek a career in sports and ensure his family can lead a better lifestyle.

Thavanesvaran, 18, winner of two gold medals already at the Asean Para Games through the men’s 400m T44 with a time of 56.43s on Monday and the 100m T42/43/44 with a time of 12.06s, plus a silver medal from the 4x100m (T42-T47) relay, hopes his success at the APG in his maiden appearance, would be the beginning of a better future for him and his family.

The teenager from Segamat, Johor was brought up in an estate where his parents were rubber tappers.

“My parents are rubber tappers. I hope my success in the APG will be the beginning of better days to come for me and my family. I want to dedicate the gold medals to my parents, brother and coach who have supported me all these years.”

The student from Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Datuk Ahmad Arshad said though he was interested in playing football as a kid, his brother spotted his talent and speed before encouraging him to take up running.

“I was very keen to play football and when my brother noticed my speed while playing football, he advised me to take up running and concentrate on my athletics career instead. He was always confident that I can become a successful runner one day.

“My brother always asked me to focus on training although I could not attend proper training because we did not have the money,” said Thavanesvaran who hopes to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics.

Despite making his debut in the APG, Thavanesvaran has been entered for four events, namely 100, 200m, 400m and 4x100m. He will be competing in the 200m today.

The Malaysian swimming contingent competing in added another two gold medals on the third day of swimming competitions at the National Aquatic Centre in Bukit Jalil.

Defending champion Fredden Dawan splashed his way to a new games record in the men’s 100m S10 Freestyle with a time of 4 minutes 48.35 seconds – erasing his own mark of 4:55.99 – while James Wong was equally impressive in the men’s 100m S8 Butterfly, as he too set a new games record after touching the finish line in 1:12.94s.

Fredden beat Steven Luang from Indonesia who trailed 13.24s behind while P. Suphat from Thailand took the bronze.

Meanwhile, James Wong’s time was 6.92s faster than Ernie Gawlan from the Philippines while Vietnam’s Nguyen Quang Vuong clocked 1:23.63s for the bronze.

Malaysia also won two silver medals through Julius Jaranding and men’s 4x100m S14 quartet while Mohamad Adib Iqbal Abdullah contributed a bronze in the men’s 100m S14 Breastroke.

New para kegler Nur Syazwani Marais ensured the support she received from her family members, especially her father, did not go to waste after she won a gold medal in her first Asean Para Games.

The 24-year-old woman from Sarawak emerged as champion in the women’s singles TPB4 at Sunway Mega Lanes after knocking down 1,015 pins.

Trailing behind with only 88 pins was another Malaysian kegler, Eliyana Johari who bagged silver, followed by Diane Neo Pei Lin of Singapore with 863 pinfalls.

 Nur Syazwani, who has a learning problem, said she started bowling since aged 10 as she often joined her father, Marias Hap to the bowling alley.

“My passion came since I was in primary school. My father knew that I was interested in bowling and he often took me to the bowling centre. I practised with my father and other family members. Besides him, the teachers also supported my interest.”

It was double joy for para kegler Muhamad Amin Rashid at the Sunway Mega Lanes – the 29-year-old was not only in celebration mood of his newborn baby last month, but also relishing his moment of glory after bagging gold medal.

Muhamad Amin, who partnered with Abdul Rahman Bava Kutty, emerged as champion in the mixed doubles TPB10 event with a total of 2,469 pinfalls, only six pins ahead the Philippines.

The athlete, from Selangor, attributed his success to his first baby Nur Rania Arissa and wife Norhidayah Sulaiman, 32, who was now going through confinement period in Putrajaya.

“I got the boost of confidence upon looking at the pictures of my daughter on the phone… I admit that the longing for my baby has made me more highly spirited to perform well today.”

Meanwhile, Malaysia bagged another gold in the mixed doubles TPB9 event through Abu Bakar Nyat and Muhd Azrin Rahim who toppled 2,489 pins, while another Malaysian pair Nadia Syafika Abd Rahman and Wong Kee Soon won silver with 2,472 pinfalls.

Malaysia  won one gold medal, one silver and two bronze medals in chess at Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre.

Nur Feiqha Maulad Mohamed Halil won the gold medal in individual women’s B2 and B3 standard (5 points) while Vietnamese Nguyen Thi My Linh (4½ points) and Indonesian  Aisah Wijayanti Putri Brahmana (4½ points) won the silver and bronze medals.

The silver medal came via Nur Feiqha-Norain Fatihah Mohamed Yusoff in women’s B2 and B3 (8 points).  Vietnamese Nguyen Thi My Linh- Nguyen Thi Minh Thu (8½ points)  won the gold medal.

The bronze medal went to Myanmar’s Phyu Phyu Win- Aye Khin (7 points).

Aqilah Syahira Ahmad-Siti Safura Jaafar won the bronze medal in women’s team P1 standard while the other bronze medal was won by Saharuddin Mappa-Hanson Ang Ping Ting in men’s B2 and B3 standard.

National para road cyclist Khairul Hazwan Wahab dedicated the gold medal he clinched yesterday to helmsman Mohd Nor Ridzuan Zainal, who was badly injured in an accident at the Latar Expressway on Sept 7.

Khairul Hazwan, who was helped by new helmsman Muhamad  Rauf Nur Misbah, won the gold medal in the Men’s B (visually impaired) Individual Time Trial event after clocking 33 minutes, 13.877 seconds in the 24.6km race in Putrajaya.

“I dedicate this gold medal to my pilot (helmsman) Ridzuan. Even though he could not race with me today, I can still feel his spirit pushing me towards victory. His absence somehow affected me because we had practised for this race for a long time.”

Khairul Hazwan was also involved in the accident, but lucky enough to only sustain minor injuries.

Meanwhile, Muhammad Rauf said he did not feel awkward having to ride with Khairul Hazwan at the very last minute as they had partnered at the Rio Paralympic two years ago.

“Thank you to our coach for choosing me to replace Mohd Ridzuan. Despite last minute training, I’m glad to be able to lead and help Khairul Hazwan to win the gold medal. I have partnered with him before, so it wasn’t difficult.”

Singaporeans Jessen Ng Hang Siew won the silver after clocking 34:34.832s and Tee Wee Leong (35:10.352s).

The national road cycling team also bagged three other gold medals yesterday through Lim Tai Keong (Men’s Individual Time Trial H1-H5), Mohamad Yusof Hafizi Shaharuddin (Mixed Individual Time trial C1,C2,C3) and Mohd Najib Turano (Mens’ Individual Time Trial C4).

The Asean Para Games 2017 features 16 sports that offer 368 gold medals – it ends on Saturday.

INDONESIA 65 42 28 135
MALAYSIA 52 44 38 134
THAILAND 29 31 38 98
VIETNAM 25 37 33 95
PHILIPPINES 11 14 11 36
MYANMAR 8 9 11 28
SINGAPORE 6 10 15 31
BRUNEI 1 4 4 9
CAMBODIA 0 2 3 5
LAOS 0 2 2 4

– Bernama

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