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National diver Muhammad Syafiq regains confidence in time to garner maiden medal

National diver Muhammad Syafiq regains confidence in time to garner maiden medal

Bronze medallists Muhammad Syafiq Bin Puteh and Ooi Tze Liang pose during the medal ceremony for the Asian Games Men’s Synchronised 3m Springboard final at the Aquatic Sports Arena in Hangzhou, China on September 30 2023. — Reuters pic

HANGZHOU, Sept 30 — National diver Muhammad Syafiq Puteh attributed his maiden success in the Asian Games to his family and teammate Ooi Tze Liang here tonight.

The 27-year-old diver said they played a role in assisting him overcome a setback after coming down with fever which affected his performance ahead of the Asian Games.

He said the fever which was about three weeks before the championships also jeopardized his training.

“Then I lost my confidence and aura to train as I was feeling weak but I am grateful as I managed to catch back. I am very thankful to Tze Liang who was very patient as I could not perform during training.

“From that moment of change, I bounced back thinking of my wife and kid in Malaysia which made me to continue trying,” he said when met after the final of the men’s synchronised 3m springboard at Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre Aquatic Sports Arena here.

Muhammad Syafiq-Tze Liang finished the competition in third place to contribute the second bronze of the diving camp after Datuk Pandelela Rinong-Nur Dhabitah Sabri won bronze in the women’s 10m synchronized platform event.

Meanwhile, Tze Liang was satisfied with the bronze achievement despite the challenges he had to overcome with Muhammad Syafiq.

“This achievement is consistent for us, the level of difficulty is not high, we use other tactics for a low level of difficulty, so we are grateful to have done our best for Malaysia,” said the 29-year-old athlete.

Previously, Tze Liang won silver in the event when partnered with Ahmad Amsyar Azman in the 2014 edition in Incheon, South Korea, but finished fourth when paired with Chew Yiwei in the 2018 edition in Jakarta-Palembang, Indonesia.

Muhammad Syafiq and Tze Liang will each continue the challenge in the men’s 3m springboard event scheduled to start on Tuesday (October 3). — Bernama