Natasha is taking part in the Women’s World Championship for the second time and this time the prestigious event is held in the same month as Malaysia celebrate her 62nd Independence Day.
The world meet starts tomorrow at the South Point Bowling Plaza and will end with the team and Masters finals on Aug 30.
The 23-year-old was part of the team that won the gold in 2017 in Las Vegas, which was held in December that year.
“It was the greatest feeling to hear Negaraku at the last world meet, it was a proud moment,” said Natasha, who has been bowling for the nation since she was 16.
“Imagine hearing it again just a day before the Merdeka Day, it will be much better...”
“It will be a sweeter success if the team can win again on this Merdeka month. This is the extra motivation for me and the team.”
Besides Natasha, the other members of the 2017 winning team are Sin Li Jane, Siti Safiyah Amirah Abdul Rahman, Esther Cheah and Syaidatul Afifah Badrul Hamidi. All of them are in Las Vegas together with debutant Nerosha Keligit in a bid to retain the team gold.
Natasha will participate in the singles, doubles, trios and team events.
She certainly made quite an impression in 2017 when coach Holloway Cheah dropped his daughter Esther for Natasha to become the third bowler.
She impressed in the final as she made two strikes in the second game to help her team pip archrivals and top seeds Singapore 2-0 (214-209, 188-177) in the best-of-three Baker format match play.
“I was nervous, and I had butterflies in my tummy. Winning the gold medal was fantastic,” she said.
“I recently finished second in the Malaysian closed where I lost to Siti in the final. That was my only achievement this year, but I can take heart from my roll-off performances.
“I’m feeling good in training more than I have ever been this year. So I hope I can continue my good form in the world championship.”
Natasha said they had settled down in Las Vegas since arriving there on Sunday.
“We explored the place first but after that it has been training. We try not to think about the pressure of defending the gold. We’re focused, and as a team, our goal is to perform our best in the championship.
“Nerosha, our newest member of the team, is an outstanding bowler and a great teammate. All the team members are adapting well.
“Ultimately, it is about how the team members, new and experienced, blend towards a common goal, which is to win something special for our beloved nation.”
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