Rio 2016 Paralympics gold medallists Abdul Latif Romly, Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli and Mohamad Ridzuan Mohamad Puzi left for the Tokyo Paralympic Games last night (August 22nd) as heads of the third batch of the Malaysian contingent.
They were among the group of 28 comprising 11 athletes and 11 officials who departed for Tokyo, Japan.
Photo via The Sun Daily
According to FMT, the other athletes in the group are Wong Kar Gee, Siti Noor Iasah Mohamad Ariffin (athletics), S. Suresh, Wiro Julin (archery), Bonnie Bunyau Gustin, Jong Yee Khie (powerlifting), Chew Wei Lun (boccia) and Abu Samah Borhan (wheelchair tennis).
The third batch, also the biggest group among the Malaysian contingent, left Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 10:50 pm on Japan Airlines.
Present to send them off were chief secretary to the Government, Mohd Zuki Ali, youth and sports ministry secretary-general M Noor Azman Taib and former youth and sports minister Reezal Merican Naina Merican.
Mohd Zuki in his speech urged the athletes to prove that their Rio 2016 achievements were not due to luck by repeating their success in Tokyo.
He hoped that the national contingent would display the spirit shown by the Malaysian squad to the recent Tokyo Olympics, which saw track cyclist Mohd Azizulhasni Awang winning silver in the men’s keirin event and Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik bagging bronze in badminton men’s doubles.
Last Thursday (August 19th), the first group of two officials and five cyclists left for Tokyo while the second group of 15 led by chef de mission Megat D Shahriman Zaharudin and comprising swimmers and table tennis players left later in the night.
The fourth and final batch of Malaysian athletes comprising three badminton players is expected to leave on Tuesday (August 24th).
Malaysia, which will be represented by 22 athletes in nine sports, is aiming to win three gold medals at the Tokyo games.
At Rio 2016, Malaysia won three golds and one bronze, all in athletics, for their best ever achievement since making their debut in the Paralympics in 1972.
Let the Games begin! We’re all rooting for you, Team Malaysia. All the best!
By: Aishah Akashah Ahadiat