Azizulhasni Awang, Mohd Shah Firdaus Sahrom, Tokyo Olympics

Azizulhasni Awang, Mohd Shah Firdaus Sahrom

Positive cycle ahead of Tokyo

Azizulhasni Awang and Mohd Shah Firdaus won the silver and bronze medal in the sprint event at the Australia Track National Cham­pionships in Brisbane.

28/3/2021 4:00:00 AM

Azizulhasni Awang and Mohd Shah Firdaus won the silver and bronze medal in the sprint event at the Australia Track National Cham­pionships in Brisbane.

PETALING JAYA: Azizulhasni Awang and Mohd Shah Firdaus Sahrom continued to boost their Tokyo Olympics credentials with silver and bronze medal-winning efforts in the sprint event at the Australia Track National Cham­pionships in Brisbane.

Good prep for the Olympics: Azizulhasni Awang and Mohd Shah Firdaus (left pic) won the silver and bronze medal in the sprint event at the Australia Track National Cham­pionships in Brisbane.PETALING JAYA: Azizulhasni Awang and Mohd Shah Firdaus Sahrom continued to boost their Tokyo Olympics credentials with silver and bronze medal-winning efforts in the sprint event at the Australia Track National Championships in Brisbane.

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In the final at the Anna Meares Velodrome last night, Azizul had to concede defeat to Matthew Richardson, who successfully defended the sprint title for Western Australia but he should still be pleased with how his campaign ended.The 33-year-old Malaysian finished better than his fourth placed position last year.

Azizul made it past Tom Cornish of New South Wales in two heats to reach the final but Shah Firdaus failed to get the better of Richardson.However, Shah Firdaus made up for the defeat with an impressive performance, beating Cornish in two heats to secure the bronze medal for Malaysia. headtopics.com

Shah Firdaus, who will be making his Olympics debut in Tokyo in July, sneaked past Cornish on both occasions to join Azizul on the podium.Richardson and Cornish are both members of the Australian sprint team who claimed bronze at the 2020 World Track Cycling Championships in Berlin.

Beating Cornish is especially satisfying for both Malaysian cyclists as the 21-year-old is the in-form male sprinter this week.Cornish already had two gold medals to show so far this week. He set a world leading time and a new Australian national record after dipping under the one minute barrier in the 1km time trial on Thursday and led New South Wales to the team sprint gold medal the following day.

Richardson and Cornish were the top two fastest qualifiers earlier in the day with 9.623 and 9.748 respectively.Azizul was sixth fastest in qualifying with 9.838 and he beat Ned Pollard in the first round before eliminating Leigh Hoffman to reach the last four.

Shah Firdaus, who had the fifth fastest qualifying time of 9.802, overcame Kye Bonser in the first round of the knockout stage and then beat Nathan Hart to enter the last four stage.Malaysian coach John Beasley was pleased to see both making the podium in what was also the main selection meet for the Australian cyclists for the Olympics. headtopics.com

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“They are exactly where I thought they would be at this stage of their preparation, ” said Beasley.“They are in a big training block and I have trained the boys solidly two days before our competition started because the Olympics are a five-day competition straight for us, ” said Beasley.

Azizul will be up for the defence of his keirin title with Shah Firdaus also hunting for a place on the podium today. Read more: The Star »

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