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Friday October 5, 2012

MNCF to unearth next Fatehah and Azizulhasni

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian National Cycling Federation (MNCF) will embark on a massive talent search to unearth the next Azizulhasni Awang and Fatehah Mustapa for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The talent search, which will kick off in December and conducted in stages, will also see the “transfer of talent” from other sports to cycling.

The initial stage of the search will be in Kuala Lumpur before spreading its wings to Sabah and Sarawak early next year.

National head coach John Beasley intends to shortlist 18 cyclists from the nation-wide search, with two of them being sent to train in Melbourne and the rest in Kuala Lumpur.

“I had penned down the talent transfer programme for a while now ... finally, it has been given the green light.

“What’s left to do is to put things into place,” said Beasley.

“We plan to do a massive talent search across all sports to identify exceptional talent who can be transferred into our cycling programme straight away.”

The Government recently announced a RM50mil allocation for the Road to Rio programme under the 2013 Budget and the trickle-down effect will surely boost the development of cycling as a medal prospect at the 2016 Olympics.

“Our goal is to have more talents under our wings so that we can have a sprint team and also compete in the team pursuit,” said Beasley.

“We also plan to employ six more coaches over the next four years and most of them will have some form of sport science background.

“We will take the responsibility to groom them into highly-skilled professional coaches so as to ensure we have enough coaches to help us take the programme to the next level.”

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