Hurdler drops quit decision to take up NSC's foreign stint offer


  • Other Sport
  • Thursday, 02 Jan 2003

BY AFTAR SINGH

PETALING JAYA: Hurdler Moh Siew Wei contemplated to quit after a poor outing in the Busan Asian Games last October. 

But now that she is among the four athletes identified for a special overseas training stint, she has decided to carry on. 

Besides the 24-year-old Siew Wei, the others identified for the long-term stint are Malik Tobias (decathlon), Mohamed Zaiful Zainal Abidin (400m) and Noraseela Khalid (400m hurdles). 

Besides training, the four will also have to study in institutions of high learning to obtain a degree in a field of sports. 

The Ipoh-born Siew Wei, who holds the national record of 13.39 for the 100m hurdles, said yesterday: “I was thinking of quitting after I failed to do well in the Busan Asiad. 

“I have a personal best of 13.39 but in Busan, I clocked a poor 13.81 to finish eighth in the final. I had not improved under the guidance of Russian coach Edwin (Ozolin). Furthermore, his contract has been terminated and he will be returning home in March.” 

Siew Wei said that after Ozolin leaves, she would have no coach to train her. 

“The only way I can improve is to train overseas. I am very excited over the National Sports Council's (NSC) offer to me to go on a long-term stint overseas,” said Siew Wei, who obtained a degree in corporate communication from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) last month. 

“I am really keen to go for the stint and also looking forward to furthering my studies and pursue a Masters degree in the field of sports.” 

Siew Wei made her international debut in the 1999 Brunei SEA Games and she has broken the national record four times since 2000. 

She first shattered the record of 13.80, set by Hii Siew Ngiik, with a time of 13.77 in a competition in Germany in June, 2000. A month later at the Malaysian Open in Penang, she lowered it to 13.64. 

Siew Wei, however, was out of action for the few months in early 2001 after undergoing surgeries on both knees. She made a comeback in June and at the KL SEA Games in September, she clocked a 13.43 to win the silver medal. 

She broke the national record for the fourth time in the Asian Grand Prix meet in Manila last year with a time of 13.39, missing the qualifying mark for the Manchester Commonwealth Games by just 0.09. 

The NSC plan to send the four athletes to Germany, who have renowned training centres in Leipzig and Halle. The other option for the train-and-study stint is Beijing. 

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