National artistic gymnast Farah Ann Abdul Hadi, buoyed by an unexpected strong Filipino support, clinched a long-awaited win as Malaysia notched a 1-3 finish in the individual all around event at the Philippines Sea Games yesterday.
Farah was in her element in the vault, bars and floor exercise disciplines, but a little shaky in the balance beam.
However, Farah’s combined score of 48.050 was enough to see her emerge victorious at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum in Manila.
Indonesian Irfanaluthfi Rifda (47.800) was second while Farah’s teammate Tan Ing Yueh (46.900) completed the podium.
Farah, who received tremendous support from the Filipino crowd, was obviously delighted to clinch her fifth Sea Games gold.
“This gold is definitely close to my heart. I’ve been dreaming about this for a long time as I came close when I won silver in Singapore in 2015,” said Farah.
“It was not a flawless performance from me but I was able to bounce back from my mistakes. I really just wanted to go out and enjoy the competition.
“The crowd here is amazing. The Filipino people really gave us strong support... I was taken by surprise.”
Farah will compete in the floor exercise and uneven bars in the individual events today.
Farah won the floor exercise and team event gold at the 2017 KL Games. However, the team event is not included this time.