ANOTHER walker R. Premkumar was disqualified in the Malaysia Games (Sukma), this time for elbowing his opponent.
The Negri Sembilan lad pipped Perak’s Mior Muhammad Amerul Mohd Sahak in a photo finish to supposedly retain the gold medal in the boys’ 10,000m walk by clocking 48:48.00 at the Perak Stadium yesterday.
But Premkumar’s joy was shortlived when Mior, who came in second with a time of 48:48.03, made an official protest claiming the former had elbowed him 50 metres from the finishing line in the 25-lap race.
Chief technical delegate Tan Boon Seng and the jury panel of Datuk R. Anamalai, Rahim Mohd Noor and Ong Kek Hean reviewed the footage of the incident.
Boon Seng said the panel disqualified Premkumar after finding him guilty of hitting Mior’s body with his left elbow.
Negri Sembilan’s team manager Anthony Samy Ysahipu was unhappy and protested against the decision.
“They announced that Prem- kumar won the gold in the stadium but we were not informed that Perak had lodged a protest,” said Anthony.
“They (the jury) also did not call us to review the footage but announced later in the stadium that the Perak walker had won the gold.
“We made a counter protest as we were unhappy with the disqualification of our athlete,” said Anthony.
But the panel of jury rejected Negri’s protest and awarded the gold to Mior.
Seven athletes took part in the walk event and Irfan Hanania Abdul Shahir of Perlis bagged the silver with a time of 50:07.41 while Nurhafiy Nasrul Zulkarnian of Perak posted 51:17.61 to settle for bronze.
A disheartened Premkumar has vowed to get it right by defending the 20,000m walk event.
The Negri athlete is the second walker to be disqualified. On Monday, Kelantan’s Nurul Alyahaziqah Kamarzaman was disqualified for floating three times in the girls’ 5,000m.