KUALA LUMPUR, March 12 ― National gymnastics queen, Farah Ann Abdul Hadi is set to miss out on defending her gold medals in the upcoming SEA Games in Hanoi, Vietnam, from May 12-23.

This came after Malaysia Gymnastics Federation (MGF) secretary general Afrita Ariani Nasril confirmed that Farah Ann, who is likely to retire soon, has been left out from the final list of women’s artistic gymnastics squad which featured four gymnasts in the biennial games.

As today is the closing date for registration with the Games organisers, Afrita said MGF had to move on without the Olympian in Vietnam as she has yet to clear the air revolving around her future with the national squad.

“From the beginning we heard that Farah Ann is retiring and then wants to continue but for MGF we cannot wait until she gives the answer (on her future).


“Farah Ann had voiced her intention to retire in 2019 so from that moment we have already prepared two plans for the SEA Games, which is Plan A with Farah Ann and Plan B without her and now we opted to use Plan B in Hanoi,” she told Bernama when contacted today.

In the meantime, Afrita, who was just appointed by the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) as the deputy chef de mission for the next SEA Games, said Farah Ann is likely to tell the media about her status in a press conference, slated to be on Monday (March 14).

Asked how the national women’s artistic gymnastics squad would fare at the Games without Farah Ann, Afrita admitted the Selangor-born athlete’s inclusion would help Malaysia to stand a better chance in earning a gold medal for the team event.


“It is quite easy for Malaysia to win gold in the team event with Farah Ann in the squad….now that she won’t be part of the Games, we are targeting one gold in the individual event via Tan Ing Yueh (vault) or Rachel  Yeoh Li Wen (uneven bars),” she added.

Farah Ann swept three gold medals in the last edition of the SEA Games in the Philippines via floor exercise, uneven bars and all-around events.

Previously, Farah Ann’s future with the national squad remains in doubt after she reportedly missed training for three weeks and is said to be considering calling it a day.

On March 1, Afrita had said that the 27-year-old gymnast was contemplating retirement due to age and injuries before adding that MGF was open to discussion if she needed help.

Apart from four gymnasts from the women’s artistic team, Afrita also announced that MGF had decided to bring six men’s gymnasts in the same category, followed by three women’s gymnasts in rhythmic individual and six others in rhythmic group exercise event.

She also said that MGF is targeting one gold from the men’s artistic squad via Tan Fu Jie (pommel horse) while another gold is from an individual rhythmic event.

Following is the list of 19 gymnasts who will represent Malaysia in the SEA Games in Hanoi, Vietnam, in May:

Men’s artistic gymnastics:

Tan Fu Jie, Muhammad Shahrul Aimy Kamarul, Ng Chun Chen, Teoh Chuen Feng, Luqman Al Hafiz Zulfa, Zul Bahrin Mat Asri

Women’s artistic gymnastics:

Tan Ing Yueh, Rachel Yeoh Li Wen, Geanie Ng Ee Ling, Zarith Imaan Khalid

Women’s rhythmic individual:

Koh Sie Yan, Izzah Amzan, Ng Joe Ee

Women’s rhythmic group exercise:

Shak Yuki, Ng Jia Wen, Ashley Lim Xin Yi, Maia Ong Xiao Han, Jingle Shak Qi, Yap Yi Tung. ― Bernama