Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Roslinda dedicates gold medal to coach who survived heart attack in Palembang

PALEMBANG: Pole vaulter Roslinda Samsu delivered Malaysia’s sixth athletics gold with a new SEA Games record of 4.20m and dedicated the victory to her coach Mohd Mansahar Abdul Jalil.
Mansahar, who has been coaching the 29-year-old Roslinda since she was 16, suffered a heart attack last Friday and was rushed to the hospital.

He has, however, recovered and was on the sidelines edging on Roslinda, who was involved in a nerve-wracking duel with long time rival Le Thi Phuong of Vietnam.

Both Roslinda and Thi Phuong hit 4.20m in their first attempt but failed to clear 4.25m.
However, the Kedahan won the gold on countback because Thi Phuong took two tries to clear an earlier height of 3.80m.

In the end, it was a sweet victory for Roslinda, who had stayed out of competition for several months to concentrate on her studies.

“I’m really thankful that my coach recovered because his presence is really important to me during tournaments. I don’t know how I would be able to focus without him,” said Roslinda.
“He motivates me. Maybe that’s why my focus was the best ever today.

“It’s not my best jump but to hit that height after being out of action for so long really surprised me.”
The men’s 4x100m relay team failed to emulate the 4x400m quartet’s golden run when they only came in third with a time of 40.41. Indonesia took gold in 39.905 while Singapore settled for silver in 39.909.
Mohd Jironi Riduan suffered a double disappointment yesterday when he injured himself in the 800m and did not finish the race.

Earlier in the day, Jironi was stripped of his bronze in the 1,500m from Sunday because he was deemed to have tugged at another runner’s shirt when he tripped.
Nevertheless, the athletics team still managed to reach their six-gold target thanks to Roslinda’s fighting effort.


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