Alia Sazana out to make amends at Asian Games

KUALA LUMPUR: After a disappointing end at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta-Palembang, national shooting champion Alia Sazana Azahari is out to prove her worth at the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou which takes place later this month.

The 31-year-old athlete said that she had to settle for 579 points at the 2018 Games, just one point behind South Korea's Kwak Junghye, who secured a ticket to the women's 25-metre pistol final at the quadrennial Games with 580 points.

However, the 2018 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist, who is making her third appearance on such a stage, said she is now on the right track and eager to show her true strengths after being coached by Mohamad Firdaus Abd Rahim, who has led the shooting team since 2020.

"I was under a South Korean coach five years ago. The South Koreans are the best and I also did my best but it was not good enough to make it to the final. So, I will use all that I've learned and turn my memory of the 2018 Asian Games experience as motivation to fight until the last shot.

"Next week, I will compete at the National Championship, not as a favourite, but to get a feel of the competition. We have not made any drastic changes with the coach either, just to improve our skills," she told reporters after chef de mission Datuk Chong Kim Fatt's visit to the National Sports Council today (September 8).

Alia Sazana refused to divulge her personal goal as she expects tough competition from other Asian shooters who will definitely be banking on their own strengths.

"I know the Asian shooters are sharp, but anything can happen during the Games, so we never know what can happen," she said.

The Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games takes place from September 23 to October 8. – Bernama

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