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Asian Games: Shah Firdaus sprints to a bronze 

Asian Games: Shah Firdaus sprints to a bronze 

Malaysia’s Muhammad Shah Firdaus Sahrom (right) and Japan’s Shinji Nakano compete in the men’s sprint quarterfinal race 2 of the cycling track event during the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou in China’s eastern Zhejiang province on September 28, 2023. — AFP pic

HANGZHOU, Sept 28 — National track cyclist Muhammad Shah Firdaus Sahrom clinched the men’s sprint bronze medal in the Hangzhou Asian Games today.

The 27-year-old won his maiden individual medal in the Asiad after beating China’s Chenxi Xue 2-0 in the bronze-medal decider at the Chun’an Jieshou Sports Centre Velodrome, about a three-hour drive from here.

He clocked 10.076 seconds (s) in the first race, 0.09s faster than the Chinese cyclists, before sealing victory by clocking 10.367s in the second race to finish 0.047s faster than Chenxi.

Muhammad Shah Firdaus, who won silver in the team sprint in the 2018 edition in Jakarta-Palembang, Indonesia, missed out on the finals after losing to China’s Zhou Yu in the semi-finals.

Japan’s Kaiya Ota bagged gold after edging Zhou Yu in the finals, in the absence of reigning Asian Championships and 2018 Asian Games gold medallist Datuk Mohd Azizulhasni Awang, who withdrew due to injuries sustained during training sessions recently.

Muhammad Shah Firdaus had earlier stunned Asian Championships silver medallist Shinji Nakano of Japan in the quarter-finals.

His brother, 22-year-old Muhammad Ridwan, had to be contented with seventh place in men’s sprint after losing to Zhou Yu in the last eight.

Muhammad Shah Firdaus and Muhammad Fadhil Mohd Zonis will compete in the men’s keirin event tomorrow.

In women’s sprint, Anis Amira Rosidi and Nurul Izzah Izzati Mohd Asri qualified for tomorrow’s quarter-finals.

The track cycling team began their Asiad campaign with bronze medals in the team sprint events, through the women’s trio of Nurul Aliana Syafika Azizan, Nurul Izzah Izzati and Anis Amira; and men’s trio of Umar Hasbullah, Muhammad Ridwan and Muhammad Fadhil. — Bernama