KUALA LUMPUR, July 22 — Despite a short preparation period, the ability of national women’s shooter Nur Suryani Mohamed Taibi to pull off a surprise at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games is beyond question.
This is because the 38-year-old managed to better her own national record in the 50 metres (m) three-position rifle event of 1172 points after collecting 1182 points in her last training session here before leaving for Tokyo, but it was not recognised because it did not meet certain criteria.
However, what is amazing is that Nur Suryani managed to achieve the feat in five weeks since she started lifting her rifle after being confirmed eligible to compete in Tokyo. In fact, she has not participated in any tournament since March last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
National shooting coach Mohd Yusri Jusoh does not rule out the possibility that something special could be achieved by Nur Suryani at the Asaka Shooting Range on the day of the event, which is scheduled for July 31.
“Wanting to do something extraordinary might be quite difficult but based on the performance before going (to Tokyo), the standard is there but just depends on her own feelings before going into competition,” he told Bernama, today.
“If she (Nur Suryani) can keep her momentum and performance like in Kuala Lumpur, she will do something special, “added Mohd Yusri, who hopes she would be able manage her emotions and stress well.
At the same time, he said Nur Suryani was adjusting to the hot and windy weather conditions at the shooting range after being given enough time to test the competition venue for three days in a row since Monday.
According to him, apart from having to adjust to shooting in hot weather conditions with temperatures reaching up to 34 degrees Celsius, Nur Suryani also needs to “read” the speed of wind movement at the venue to facilitate her on the day of the event.
As she would only be returning to resume training at the competition venue from July 28-30, Mohd Yusri said the period would be used to the maximum to understand the real needs during the day of the event to ensure that Nur Suryani was at her best level.
“It’s not the time for tactical and technical talk anymore, what’s important is her feelings and mental strength. In a big sporting event like this, we want her to be calm, we will help her in controlling emotions, adjust to the environment,” he explained.
The Tokyo Olympics, which will be held from tomorrow to August 8, is Nur Suryani’s second appearance at the prestigious sporting event after grabbing the attention of global sports fans at the 2012 Olympics in London, as she competed despite being eight months pregnant.
Having a good reputation in the country, she also made Malaysia proud through various successes on the international stage, including winning silver and bronze medals at the 2014 Asian Games, bronze medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and a series of successes in the SEA Games. — Bernama