Top of the world experience as muscleman Syarul and high roller Natasha win national award

Proud moment: Bodybuilder Datuk Mohd Syarul Azman Mahen Abdullah and bowler Natasha Roslan showing off their trophies after winning the National Sportsman and Sportswoman award. - Ahmad Izzrafiq Alias/The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Bodybuilder Datuk Mohd Syarul Azman Mahen Abdullah and bowler Natasha Roslan has bagged the 2023 National Sportsman and Sportswoman award for their stellar achievements. .

The 50-year-old Syarul, a former footballer from Kuala Lumpur, finally won the award for the first time after being nominated for five times before.

Syarul is the third bodybuilder to win the prestigious award after Datuk Malek Noor (1986) and Sazali Samad (2000, 2006, 2013, 2014).

He won his sixth world title last in South Korea. His other world titles came in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2022.

The other nominees in his category were Asian No. 2 bowler Rafiq Ismail, national squash champion and Ng Eain Yow, equestrian rider Qabil Ambak and karate exponent Mohd Arif Afifuddin Ab Malik.

Eain Yow, Qabil and Arif were gold medallists for Malaysia at the Hangzhou Asian Games last year.

“It’s the highest recognition for a national athlete in the country and I'm contented to finally win this,” said Syarul.

Natasha won the award for winning the singles gold at last year's World Championships and ending a 12-year wait for an individual gold.

She beat Asian Games double gold medallist and squash player S. Sivasangari, Nur Amisha Azrilrizal (muay thai), Nur Syazrin Mohd Latif (sailing) and Nurul Alyani Jamil (lawn bowls).

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