Chance for team sprint squad to qualify for Olympics, says Azizulhasni

Mohd Azizulhasni Awang believes Malaysia has what it takes to make it to the Olympics. — Reuters pic
Mohd Azizulhasni Awang believes Malaysia has what it takes to make it to the Olympics. — Reuters pic

SEPANG, Sept 1 — The national track cycling squad have proven they are worthy of a team sprint slot in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics based on their performance at the 2018 Asian Games Jakarta-Palembang, says Mohd Azizulhasni Awang. 

“If compared to the time achieved in the Asian Games, we are in the eighth position if compared to the results of the recent World Championship.

“There is a big chance for the team sprint squad to the 2020 Olympics,” said Mohd Azizulhasni when met at Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) here today.

On Aug 27, the national track cycling squad set a new Asian Games record in the men’s team sprint at Jakarta International Velodrome.

However, he said all depended on the arrangements and programmes planned by chief coach John Beasley.

The national trio of Mohd Azizulhasni, Muhammad Shah Firdaus Sahrom and Muhammad Fadhil Mohd Zonis clocked a time of 43.934 seconds, which erased the previous record of 44.406 seconds set by a Chinese team in the 2010 edition in Guangzhou, China.

The time also rewrote the national record of 44.752s created by Mohd Azizulhasni, Mohd Rizal Tisin and Josiah Ng in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

On the overall, Mohd Azizulhasni said he met his personal target of one gold medal even though it was not in his pet keirin event.

“Actually the success at the Asian Games exceeded my personal as well as the federation’s target. In fact this is the best track cycling squad outing in the Asian Games.   

“Besides the gold, my teammates and I also brought home a silver and a bronze,” he said.

After this, the squad will focusing on the UCI Track Cycling World Cup next month in France (Oct 19-21)  and Canada (Oct 26-28).

“Here we will try to collect as many points as possible at the World Championship and seek qualification to the Olympics,” he said. — Bernama

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