Darters target good showing

The 2018 Malaysia Open organising committee members: (from left) Pathmanathan, MDA assistant secretary N. Kalaiarasan, Nancy, MDA treasurer R. Jayasandran, MDA deputy president Ravi Suppiah and MDA vice-president Azmi who is also the Malaysia team coach for the tournament.

THE Malaysian Darts Federation (MDS) are eyeing a strong performance at the inaugural Cosmo All Darts Asia 2018 (CADA) team championship in just over two weeks time.

Malaysia we will see a mix of up and coming players pair joining forces with seasoned veterans from the local darts scene as they challenge heavy hitters from the region for at least a spot in the finals.

The five players are Norhisame Wahab, 50, Muhammad Haikal Rusli, 32, and Colin Anthony Thambu Xavier, 58, from the Klang Valley as well as Clarence Joseph, 47, and Mark Jumin, 27, from Sabah.

Team manager C. Pathmanathan said though they are not the best ranked players in the country, the five showed promising performance during the selection process and equally as important possessed passion and the right attitude.

“They have been consistently finishing in the top eight positions in the past few state opens with double Malaysian Open Singles finalist Mark finishing runner-up in the Kuching Open singles event in July and with Clarence as part of the winning team,” he noted.

“Haikal is another promising new face and currently one of the most active local players. He impressed us with his competition track record and performance at the selection so much that coach Azmi (Arif Mohd Ali) and I decided to give the team some young blood.

Norhisame and Colin, the most experienced of the five have decades of experience under their belts and are expected to be the team’s cornerstone.

Pathmanathan, who is also MDA secretary said the other eight teams –Brunei, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand– participating in the CADA are represented by some of the best players in the their respective countries but is confident his side is able to put up a strong fight.

“Even though we have a mixed group of players, for me, they are strong enough to fight the giants like Japan, Philippines and Thailand.

“This is also about looking beyond the first edition of this tournament, we want to develop the future of darts so it is not just simply picking the best players in the country,” he noted.

The inaugural CADA will carry a total cash purse of RM20,000 and is set to run concurrently with the Malaysian Open from Oct 4-7 at the Federal Hotel in Kuala Lumpur.

The MDA organised Malaysian Open –a World Darts Federation ranked event– will also see four other events Men’s Team, Women’s Doubles, Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles take place with more than 750 local and international players vying a cash purse of RM45,000 and world ranking points.

MDA president Nancy Ambrose said the 2018 Malaysian Open is a 131 teams will vie for the Team Event title which carries a prize of RM12,000.

Philippines will return to defend their title in the Team Event as strong favourites while 2017 Men’s Singles champion Donjem Dimacculangan also from Philippines will return to defend his title. Iran’s Mozhgan Rahmani who was last year’s Women’s Singles Champion has also confirmed that she will return.

“We are seeing a stronger interest in the Women’s category this year especially from Malaysia and India and for the first time ever, Indonesia will be participating in a Malaysian Open, with their entry in the CADA,” Nancy said.

“The introduction of CADA this year is our first step towards bringing the best Asian darters together in one place and we are off to a good start.”

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