Wednesday, 4 June 2014 | MYT 8:25 PM
Irfan eyeing more glory after Sukma success
Mohd Irfan Shamsuddin will compete in the World Junior Athletics Championships in Oregon, United States from July 22-27. - filepic
KANGAR: Teenager Mohd Irfan Shamsuddin has made a solid progress in the men’s discus event in the last six months.
The towering Negri Sembilan athlete, who stands at 1.93m, was only 18 when he broke his national record with a throw of 53.16m at the Myanmar SEA Games last December. His effort erased his previous mark of 49.90m, which he set in the Brunei Open last November.
His SEA Games effort enabled him to qualify for the World Junior Athletics Championships in Oregon, United States, from July 22-27 as his mark bettered the qualifying mark of 51.50m.
In the just-concluded Perlis Malaysia Games (Sukma), Irfan improved his record by more than one metre – hurling the discus to a distance of 54.26m last Saturday.
The achievement in Sukma has fired him up to win a gold medal in the 16th edition of Asian Junior meet in Taiwan from June 12-15.
Irfan, who finished eighth in the last Asian junior meet in Colombo two years ago, is confident of returning with the gold from Taiwan after six weeks of training-cum-competition in Europe in April.
“I took part in a competition in Halle, Germany, and threw a distance of 58.33m, which is my personal best at the junior level (the weight of the discus for the junior level is 1.5kg compared to 2kg in senior level competitions, including Sukma).
“If I can throw the same distance as in Halle, then I’m sure I can win the gold medal,” said Irfan, who is trained by Slovakia coach Fero Petrovich.
Irfan, who is pursuing a degree in business management at Universiti Malaya, will also feature in the Malaysian Open Championships at Stadium Utama in Kangar from June 25-27.
Irfan also intends to make an impact in the World Juniors as it would be his first and last outing in the competition, which is for athletes aged below 19.
A total of 24 athletes, comprising 13 boys and 11 girls, will feature in the Asian junior meet.
The boys are Badrul Hisyam Abdul Manap (100m, 200m, 4x400m); Kwong Kar Jun (400m, 4x400m); Mohd Firdaus Kimleh (400m, 4x400m); Mohd Azam Masari (400m, 4x400m); Dinesh Krishnan Kumar (400m, 4x400m); Mohd Rizzua Haizad Mohd (110m hurdles); R. Jeeventhiran (800m); S. Saranraj (1,500m, 5,000m); Norshafie Mohd Shah (high jump); Mohd Azly Ghazali (high jump); Mohd Afiq Ahmad Alham (pole vault); Luqman Hakim Ramlan (long jump); and R. Eswaran (10km walk).
The girls are Noor Eewan Syafiqah Mohd Sobri (100m, 200m); Siti Nur Afiqah Abdul Razak (400m, 4x400m); Saidatul Izzati Suhaimi (400m hurdles, 4x400m); Shereen Samson Vallbouy (4x400m); Layalia Rameli (4x400m); Noor Shahidatun Nadia Mohd Zuki (long jump, triple jump); R. Kirthana (long and triple jump); Yap Sean Yee (high jump); Nurfazira Jamaluddin (hammer); Elena Goh Ling Yin (10km walk); and Pua Ling En (10km walk).
Hurdler Mohd Rizzua and triple jumper Kirthana have also qualified for the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing from Aug 16-28.