Shooting: Nur Suryani may get to compete in two events at the Olympics

PETALING JAYA: A new ruling may pave the way for Nur Suryani Mohd Taibi to make history as the first Malaysian shooter to compete in two events at the Olympics.

Nur Suryani will get her double shot at the London Olympics if the MQS (minimum qualifying score) ruling is applied.

The Asian Shooting Cham­pionships concluded in Doha yesterday with Suryani the only one among the five shooters under the ‘Road to London’ programme to qualify for the Olympics.

The 29-year-old secured one of the two tickets on offer in the women’s 10m air rifle. She also came close to earning an additional spot for the country in the women’s 50m rifle three-position after reaching the final but only managed eighth placing.

But Suryani said she is eligible to shoot in both events at the Olympics.

“There is only one quota slot for Malaysia in the 10m air rifle but I can also enter for the 50m rifle three-position as I achieved the MQS score.

“The association will have to apply for it,” said Suryani, who is the first Malaysian female rifle shooter to qualify on merit for the Olympics.

That should not be a problem as Suryani managed 581 points in Doha while the MQS is 565 for the 50m rifle three-position.

The National Shooting Asso­ciation of Malaysia (NSAM) still have the right to nominate any shooter for an Olympic quota spot but Suryani has proven her worth as the best Malaysian rifle shooter in major competitions for the past two years.

Suryani bagged two gold medals at the Indonesia SEA Games last year and it earned her the Woman Olympian of the Year award for 2011.

She also made history as the first Malaysian female shooter to win an Asian Games medal when she claimed bronze in the 10m air rifle in Guangzhou in 2010, two months after partnering Nur Ayuni Farhana Halim to gold in the New Delhi Commonwealth Games.

She also won a silver in the Melbourne leg of the 2010 World Cup series.

Suryani, who also finished fifth in the women’s 50m rifle prone (not an Olympic discipline) at the Asian meet, has certainly made a mark in international shooting. The spot she earned in the 10m air rifle event makes Malaysia one of only four countries to qualify on merit for the Olympics.

China and Iran have the maximum two quota spots while Malaysia and Iran have one each.

Hasli Izwan Amir Hasan was the only Malaysian shooter to qualify for the last Olympics in Beijing four years ago, but he missed the cut this time.

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