PETALING JAYA: Despite the absence of three top women's pistol shooters, the National Shooting Association of Malaysia (NSAM) have set a target to win five gold medals in the 31st South-East Asian Championships (Seasa), which begin today at the Subang Range.
Bibiana Ng, Joseline Cheah and Siti Nur Masitah were tested positive for propranolol, a banned drug during the President Ally T.H. Ong competition in March. And they are out of competition until they get the clearance from the International Sports Shooting Federation (ISSF).
At the last championships in Hanoi, Malaysia had a haul of 2-5-6. And Joseline won the gold medal in the 10m air pistol event. The other gold medallist was Hasli Izwan Amir Hassan in the men's rapid fire pistol event.
The NSAM executive secretary, Jasni Shaari, said: We are banking on the women's rifle shooters this time and we expect three gold medals from them.
We expect Shahera (Rahim Raja) to stamp her mark. She shot 399 in the 10m air rifle event in a competition last month and it was just one point short of the perfect score.
Jasni added that Shahera had even done better than the more experienced Nur Suryani Mohd Taibi and Muslifah Zulkifli.
We are also banking on Hasli to win his third gold in rapid fire pistol. We also hope the men's skeet team will deliver the fifth gold medal,'' he said.
The championships, which had attracted shooters from 11 countries, offer 36 gold medals 22 for men and 14 for women.
Jasni added that there would also be a junior championships, which offer four gold medals each in the boys' and girls competitions.