Fairuz’s conversion – from full-back to virus fighter

Don’t miss a spot: Fairuz disinfecting the toilet of a house in Alor Setar.

PETALING JAYA: Fairuz Rahman has not touched a rugby ball for more than a month but he had hardly missed it. Fairuz has never been busier. The 35-year-old national rugby player is also one of the frontline heroes helping to combat the Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

Fairuz is a health assistant officer with the Health Ministry in Alor Setar and is now going around the city sanitising premises.

Alor Setar has almost 100 active cases of Covid-19 and Fairuz is working 12-hour shifts. He is so busy he hardly has time to see his children.

“This has been my daily job for more than a month since I got the call-up to return to Alor Setar to help.

“I go out from the morning to late evening to work in the health sanitising team.

“It is tiring and hot to stay inside the protective suit in this climate but I am used to it as it’s my part of my civic responsibility.

Fairuz in action on the rugby field.Fairuz in action on the rugby field.

“I am proud to have the chance to help fight Covid-19. I hope everyone will also do their part as this virus is no joke. It can easily spread within any community,” said Fairuz, who takes extra precautions not to expose his family when he returns home late in the evening.

“I take a shower first and de-contaminate before I go back home.

“For now, it’s all about this work and I am not thinking about rugby as I don’t know when I can play again.

“I just do stretching exercises to stay in shape,” said Fairuz, who has been with the national team for 12 years.

He captained the Keris Conlay Club to win the Malaysian Rugby League (MRL) three times in 2015, 2017 and 2019.

He was also man of the match in the final three times and voted the best player in the MRL three times in 2015, 2017 and 2019.

Fairuz, who plays as a standoff, also helped Malaysia win the Asian Rugby Championships Division One title twice in Kuala Lumpur in 2016 and in Ipoh in 2017.

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