Bowling women's trio strike Malaysia's first gold at Asian Games

JAKARTA: Malaysia’s wait for a first gold medal at the Asian Games is over in Indonesia!

Bowlers Esther Cheah, Syaidatul Afifah Badrul Hamidi and Siti Safiyah Amirah Abdul Rahman blazed the lanes in the women’s trios event to emerge as the winners when they amassed 4,326 pinfalls to beat Taiwan’s Pan Yu-fen, Chou Chia-chen and Tsai Hsin-yi by 71 pins at the Jakabaring Bowling Center in Palembang on Wednesday.

Singapore’s Joey Yeo, Daphne Tan and Bernice Lim claimed bronze on 4,250.

The other Malaysian team comprising Shalin Zulkifli, Sin Li Jane and Natasha Roslan, who led after the second game, fought hard but settled for fourth with 4,144 pinfalls.

It’s Esther third Asiad gold after winning two titles at the 2006 Doha Games while it’s a first for Syaidatul and Siti Safiyah.

Malaysia have won the event only once in Asian Games through Shalin, Shirley Chow and Lydia Kwah at the 1994 Hiroshima Games.

 Head coach Holloway Cheah was ecstatic with the win.

“I want to thank my Lord for carrying us through,” said a delighted Holloway.

“These three girls fought their hearts out. At the start of the last game, only 60 pins separated them from their opponents in second and third place but they kept their composure to romp home for this sensational win.

“They were simply fantastic.”

Team manager Maradona Chok said: “It’s a superb win for Malaysia as they stood by each other and stepped up for one another when one struggled. It’s absolutely great performance from the three of them.”

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