PETALING JAYA: China should take the victory of their rider Han Tao over Malaysia’s Rizal Tisin in the 1km time trial at the recent Asian cycling championships (ACC) in Kalimantan as a window of opportunity.
They had dropped the event from the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games programme and instead included the women’s 500m time trial, which some see as an attempt to undermine Malaysia’s prospect of winning a gold medal.
The 1km time trial is not an Olympic event and that provided a reason for China to omit it from the Asiad. Ironically, the women’s 500m time trial is also not one of the races in the Olympics.
But since Han Tao beat the Asian record holder recently, China should think of reinstating the event for their own benefit.
The Malaysian National Cycling Federation (MNCF) deputy president, Datuk Naim Mohamad, said that the result in Kalimantan proved that Rizal was not unbeatable and China stood a chance at winning a gold in the event at the Asiad.
“At the same time, it does not mean that they will surely win the women’s 500m event even though they are the favourites. There is a good chance of our own Fatehah (Musatapa) winning the event,” he said.
He said that the MNCF would try to get the support from the Asian Cycling Confederation (ACC) members as well as the International Cycling Union (UCI) to pressure for the event to be reinstated.
“I will personally make contact with all 39 affiliates, excluding China, to ask for their support. If we could get 20 of them on board it will be enough to put pressure on China.”
Naim, however, admitted that although the MNCF would fight hard for the event to be reinstated, chances of winning it were slim.
“They (China) have already completed the schedule of events for the Games and that would make things very difficult,” he said.