KUALA LUMPUR, July 15 — National sprinters Khairul Hafiz Jantan and Zaidatul Husniah Zulkifli have confirmed they would not be participating in the respective men’s and women’s 100m events at the 94th Malaysia Open Sport Championship on July 17-18.
The two sprinters have instead, opted to participate in the 200m and 4x100m events at the event which is also known as the SEA Games Pre-Tournament.
Sprint king Khairul Hafiz said he decided to join the two events after receiving advice from national sprint coach Mohd Poad Md Kassim.
“I am following the plan of the coach who wants me to focus on both these events rather than the 100m event.
“I also hope to improve my record of 21.01s in the 200m event at the Malaysia Open next week,” he said when met by reporters at the Malaysian Athletics Federation’s (MAF) Aidilfitri event here today.
Zaidatul, also known as Adeq among her teammates, said she decided not to participate in the women’s 100m event this time as she had participated in the discipline in several overseas tournaments recently.
“The coach also advised me to focus on both (200m and 4x100m) events... I have previously competed in the 100m event, so it is important for me to have the best rhythm in these two events before the SEA Games next month,” said Zaidatul.
In the meantime, MAF president Datuk Karim Ibrahim said 10 countries had confirmed their participation in the 94th edition of the Malaysia Open. including the Philippines, which sent a total of 28 athletes.
“All the competing countries have sent their best athletes, especially from the Maldives, Thailand and the Philippines, so I see their presence as giving fierce competition to our athletes.
“The Malaysia Open will also give MAF the opportunity to test the sporting equipment at the National Stadium to be used during the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games next month,” he noted.
Earlier, Karim presented incentives worth RM35,000 to six national athletes who broke the national record in their respective events.
They are discus thrower Muhammad Irfan Shamsuddin; women’s 4x100 quartet Nurul Faizah Asma Mazlan, Siti Fatimah Mohamad, S. Komalam Shally and Zaidatul Husniah; and Khairul Hafiz. — Bernama