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Published: Tuesday September 17, 2013 MYT 4:50:00 PM
Updated: Tuesday September 17, 2013 MYT 4:53:03 PM

Dhabitah's star set to shine

PETALING JAYA: The future is rosy for diver Nur Dhabitah Sabri. She has the potential to be as good as, if not better than, Olympic bronze medallist Pandelela Rinong.

The 14-year-old Dhabitah won two gold medals in only her second international outing at the just-concluded Asian Diving Cup in Singapore.

She partnered London Olympian Traisie Vivien Tukiet to take gold in the women’s 10m platform synchro and claim one for herself in the individual platform the following day – beating Asian Youth Games silver medallist Loh Zhiayi in the process.

Zhiayi, two years older and also from Kuala Lumpur, took the silver.

But what is more interesting about Dhabitah’s achievement in the individual discipline is that she is training on a higher degree of difficulty (DD) routines compared to the more experienced Pandelela and Traisie.

It is also testament to her talent and diligence, without which the coach clearly would not have given her the opportunity to train at the higher level of difficulty.

Dhabitah is able to excute all her dives from 10m (5m and 7m is allowed at the junior level) and the set of five dives she executes in competition now is higher than what World Championships bronze medallist Pandelela does.

Dhabitah, who bagged two golds at the Kuantan Sukma last year, has a combined DD of 16.0 as compared to Pandelela’s 15.5.

She is also learning the 207C (a back 3½ somersault tuck routine), which carries a DD of 3.3. It’s a routine that Pandelela has not been able to pick up.

“I must improve on my point collection and that why the coach has raised my DD higher.

“With the DD I have, I should be scoring higher points. But I’m still not consistent and am a long way off from being as good as Pandelela.

“I’ve not had the chance to go for more competitions as I’m still young and there is an age limit for most senior competitions.

“I’ll need more exposure for continuous improvement,” said Dhabitah, who also impressed in her first competition this year – the United States Grand Prix in Fort Lauderlade in May.

At 13, Dhabitah just missed out on making the women’s 10m platform semi-finals after finishing 14th in the preliminaries out of a field of 25.

Dhabitah first caught public attention when she bagged two gold medals in the SEA Aquatics Championships in Singapore last year, an achievement that won her a promotion to the elite squad.

Tags / Keywords: diving, Nur Dhabitah Sabri, Pandelela Rinong, Traisie Vivien Tukiet, Asian Diving Cup


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