Shah Firdaus' breakthrough medal

BIRMINGHAM: National track cycling coach John Beasley hopes Shah Firdaus Sahrom's breakthrough at the Commonwealth Games will help "open the floodgates" of success.

Shah did well to claim bronze in the men's keirin at the Lee Valley VeloPark in London on Saturday, crossing the line barely inches behind second-placed Jack Carlin of Scotland.

Trinidad and Tobago's Nicholas Paul claimed a comfortable win in the event.

It was Shah's first individual medal in a major multi-sport competition.

"It (bronze) means a lot to Shah, and I am so happy for him," said Beasley.

"To be honest, this performance has been a long time coming. Shah is really talented but does not always back himself up (with self-belief).

"I hope this is the beginning of him shining on the world stage.

"He needed this performance to believe in himself, and I hope the floodgates are now open. I hope we will now get to see the real Shah, and what he is capable of achieving.

"Shah would have won a silver if he had the room to use his speed as we saw how well he topped his semi-final."

Shah, who was drawn as the fourth rider behind the derny, found himself boxed in with two laps to go. He managed to manoeuvre himself out of the situation, but it did hamper his setup for the finish.

Shah's younger brother Ridwan, who is making his Commonwealth debut, and Fadhil Zonis did not make it past the first-round repechage.

The Johor-born dedicated the medal to his father, Sahrom Osman, who will be celebrating his birthday on Aug 10.

"It may be bronze, but it feels like gold," Shah told Bernama.

"I came back (to the Games) with the intent to make up for going out in the early rounds at the 2018 Gold Coast edition.

"It is sad that Azizulhasni Awang was not by my side this time. We are close like brothers, and in the keirin, we always make sure our distance from each other is not too far apart.

"He advised me to ride with my instincts and give it everything I have.

"Azizulhasni told me that I rode well and was the second fastest rider in the event."

Azizulhasni skipped the Games as he is recovering from heart surgery and expected back early next year.

Shah competed in the individual sprint event late today.

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