NSC’s new programme – switch sports and be world beaters

KUALA LUMPUR: It is the hope that the soon-to-be launched National Sports Council (NSC) Talent Transfer programme will help unearth more world beaters for Malaysia.

NSC deputy director-general (sports development) Jefri Ngadirin said the programme will give potential athletes a new lease of life and expedite the development of new athletes.

Jefri highlighted the successful switches by athletes like Anis Amira Rosidi (pic), who moved from athletics to track cycling, and Wendy Ng, who transitioned from rhythmic gymnastics to diving.

“The Talent Transfer programme will start with three sports – diving, cycling and athletics – before we expand to others,” said Jefri.

“We had two briefings, one in March and another in May. We are testing the waters first with these three sports.

“We planned to start in June and the module is ready but we have now postponed it until after the Paris Olympics.

“We will start with the National Schools (MSSM) and the State Sports Schools.

“We are looking at athletes who could not progress further in their sports. They will be given a year to acclimatise into their new sports.

“Anis is a success story. In her first year after switching, she didn’t participate in any competition at all but it worked for her. She advanced well and won a bronze medal (women’s team sprint) at the 2023 Hangzhou Asian Games.

“Wendy was a gymnast who participated until the MSSM level before taking up diving. We can look at gymnasts and wushu practitioners as they have the dexterity needed for diving.”

Jefri added that extensive discussions with coaches and respective National Sports Associations (NSA) are necessary to identify suitable talents for the switch.

“Some sports have skill sets needed for other sports. This shortens the process of developing athletes.

“Starting from zero is tougher and time consuming but we now have athletes with higher standards in terms of physique and fitness,” he said.

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