Monday, 25 August 2014 | MYT 9:05 PM
Asiad KO for karate exponents Shaharudin and Nur Eleena
Shaharudin Jamaludin has been laid out of the Asian Games due to a suspected dengue fever. - filepic
PETALING JAYA: The Asian Games dream is over for national karate champions Shaharudin Jamaludin and Nur Eleena Malik, who have been left out of the list for Incheon next month.
Shaharuddin, the 2011 Indonesia SEA Games gold medallist, will not be vying in men’s kumite below 75kg due to suspected dengue fever while Eleena has to sit out the action in women’s below 50kg due to a muscle tear injury.
With the withdrawals, Malaysia are fielding six exponents instead of the maximum eight allowed for the Games. All six are Asiad debutants and going under category A, where the expenses are borne by the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM).
The Malaysia Karate Federation (Makaf) secretary Vincent Chen said they are putting their faith on the new faces to spring surprises en route to meeting a one gold target.
Five out of the six going were winners at the Myanmar SEA Games last year – Lim Chee Wei (men’s individual kata), Senthil Kumaran (men’s kumite below 60kg), Syakilla Salni (women’s kumite below 61kg), Shree Sharmini Segaran (women’s kumite below 68kg) and Nisha Alagasan (women’s kumite below 55kg).
The exception is Ragonathan Sharmendran, who claimed silver in men’s kumite below 67kg.
Experienced exponents like L. Kunasilan, Jamaliah Jamaludin and Mohd Hatta Mahamut, who have contributed medals at Asian level, are the notable absentees but Vincent defended their exclusions.
”The exponents going went through a strict selection process. They have to be physically fit and we put them through a four-minute bout (a normal bout lasts three minutes). If they are not fit in the first place, how are they going to perform at the Asian Games?”
The team will leave tomorrow for the Okinawa Open in Japan this weekend and then head to Turkey for the Istanbul Open before wrapping it up with a two-week stint in Egypt.
At the last Games in Guangzhou, they bagged two golds, two silvers and a bronze medal.