BRUNEI Darussalam ‘A’ athletes comprising Md Shahrol Fikri bin Md Salleh, Md Ammar Safwan bin Haji Zaidin, Abdul Aqil bin Abdul Kadir and Azman anak Kiai secured the bronze medal in the final of the 4x400m event in the 10th BIMPNT-EAGA Friendship Games at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium last night.
The quartet recorded a time of 3:34.26 to fend off the challenge of Northern Territory of Australia in the final straight behind silver medallists South Sulawesi who clocked 3:30.38 and gold medallists Sabah who posted 3:29.11.
Abdul Aqil was the third runner in the relay and his explosive speed helped catapult Brunei Darussalam ‘A’ in medal contention with the Northern Territory of Australia team on their tails.
During the final changeover with Azman taking ownership of the baton, Northern Territory looked to have an edge but the Brunei ‘A’ athlete found a burst of pace to gain some distance and subsequently retrieved third place in the final bend.
Azman sustained pressure from the Northern Territory sprinter as both raced for bronze but the former held firm and brought back home a medal in the final event of the athletics event.
Brunei Darussalam ‘A’ athletes pose with their medals. – FADHIL YUNUS
“We are very happy with our performance tonight. We did not expect to win bronze because each one of us picked up injuries,” said Mohd Ammar Safwan in an interview with the Sunday Bulletin.
He said that there were athletes who had just competed in the 200m event final adding that they were giving their best for Brunei Darussalam.
“We try to show our fighting spirit for Brunei Darussalam. Since Brunei is the host, we show what we have,” he added.
Asked on how their bronze-medal exploits could bode for the future, he said, “This year we won the bronze medal. Maybe if we are still qualified to compete in the next two years, we will target for silver and gold.
“The training process will take longer months or even years of preparation. We will now prepare for the next Games to win silver or gold,” he said.
Sabah also took gold in the women’s 4x400m event led by the excellent Chelsea Cassiopea Evali Bopulas and Puteri Nur Safirah Gajali with a time of 4:06.81. The Sabah duo has earlier made a one-two podium finish in the 200m event.
Meanwhile, shot put silver medallist Brunei Darussalam ‘A’ athlete Siti Nurhayati binti Md Jefry came close towards obtaining a second medal after finishing fourth in the discus event.
Source: Borneo Bulletin Online