Azizulhasni struggles in TCL Berlin

KUALA LUMPUR: Azizulhasni Awang, who is on the comeback trail, got his second taste of competitive action in as many weeks at the German round of the UCI Track Champions League (TCL) on Saturday.

Azizulhasni, known as the Pocket Rocketman, who had open heart surgery in late April, showed he was still some way from his best as he did not progress past the first round of the men's keirin and individual sprint at the Berlin Velodrome.

The 34-year-old finished fifth from six riders in his first-round keirin heat, which was won by world champion Harrie Lavreysen of the Netherlands, with India's Esow Alban coming in second.

Lavreysen went on to win in the final, with Australia's rising star Matthew Richardson and Germany's Stefan Botticher coming in second and third, respectively.

Azizulhasni finished third in his sprint heat behind Esow and Israel's Mikhail Yakovlev, who crossed the line first. Only the winners in each heat progressed to the semi-finals.

The sprint final was another showdown between Richardson and Lavreysen, with the former turning the tables this time. Richardson won the sprint at the opening round in Mallorca a fortnight ago.

Azizulhasni is ranked 10th among 18 riders in the overall men's sprint standings with 20 points after two rounds.

Lavreysen leads the title race with 74 points, followed by Richardson, who is two points adrift. Botticher is third overall on 58 points.

The third round will be held at the St Quentin En Yvelines Velodrome in France on Saturday.

Most Popular
Related Article
Says Stories