Official Website of Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council
Silat team robbed by ref?
Tuesday, 10th November 2009

THEY were the country's best pencak silat exponents during last week's 3rd Asian Indoor Games but they did not return home satisfied.

Sisters Norleyermah and Norleyharyanti Hj Raya teamed up with Nurul Aimi Amalina Zainidi to produce the country's finest finish at the Oct 29-Nov 8 event, capturing silver in the women's team regu event

after amassing 423 points last Friday. Hosts Vietnam scored 449 to win gold at the Haiduong Gymnasium in Ho Chi Minh, with Malaysia finishing third with 394 points.

The national contingent which competed in three sports returned to Brunei yesterday evening with a medal haul of one silver and six bronze, and though they were pleased with the result, the silver medallists felt it could have been a different story.

"No comment," said Norleyermah at the Brunei International Airport when asked if they could have won gold.

"I think we already did our best. As for the refereeing well, they are the hosts so we just have to accept the result," said Norleyermah.

Though it was obvious that she felt the referee was biased, she was not too upset with finishing second.

"I am still happy with the medal though, since this is the first time we have competed in this tournament," she said.

Winner of the women's seni tunggal event during the 2007 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Korat, Thailand, Norleyermah said she will be competing in the same event during this year's edition of the regional meet in Laos from Dec 9-18.

The country was represented by 10 pencak silat exponents in Vietnam and eight of them returned with medals, a good sign since most of them are expected to fly the flag for Brunei at the Laos SEA Games as well.

Except for the bronze medal that wushu exponents Faustina Woo Wai Sii and Lee Ying Shi won in the women's single weapon vs weapon event, all the other medallists inVietnam were part of the pencak silat team.

"This is a big achievement for us and for the pencak silat team some athletes have shown improvement," said the contingent's chef de mission Mariam Ulat.

"I am also very proud of the wushu team who returned with bronze from their first senior tournament even though they were up against giants in the sport such as China," said Mariam.

"It is a good showing considering wushu is still new in Brunei," she added.

Competing in cue sports, HRH Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister's Office, was the only athlete representing the country in the sport after making his debut on Nov 1 in the 9-ball singles event.

Present at the Brunei International Airport to greet the team upon arrival was the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports Dato Paduka Hj Jemat Hj Ampal, director of the Department of Youth and Sports Hj Mohamad Penglima Asgar Dato Paduka Hj Abdullah and other officials from the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports.

Courtesy from Brunei Times