His Royal Highness Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah (L) speaks with Rozmacynthia Anak Simbilan (R) and Florence Sea Wern Lyn (2nd R) while Anderson Lim Chee Wei (3rd R) and Chef de Mission Pengiran Anak Md Sofian Pengiran Anak Haji Ibrahim (2nd L) look on before their departure for the 4th edition of the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Isle of Man, UK.Picture: BT/Saifulizam
Brunei will be banking on athletics and swimming to make an impression at next month's Commonwealth Youth Games in the Isle of Man, United Kingdom.
The country is sending three athletes to the September 7-13 event, the meet set to showcase the best emerging Under-18 talent from the Commonwealth countries.
The Sports School's coach Raup Tassim will be in charge of Brunei's sole entry in athletics, Rozmacynthia Simbilan, while national swim coach Eric Landa will head the team of two swimmers Anderson Lim Chee Wei and Florence Sea Wern Lyn.
Currently in its fourth edition, an estimated 1000 athletes are expected to compete in seven sports with badminton, boxing, cycling, gymnastics and rugby 7s the other five.
Though finishing with medals might be too much to ask for, Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council (BDNOC) president His Royal Highness Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah wants the nation's athletes to leave a mark in the competition.
"I hope you will be as competitive as possible and use the Games as motivation to progress further in your respective sports," he told the athletes during a flag handing-over ceremony at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas yesterday.
"Put up a strong performance and take this golden opportunity to interact with the athletes from other countries.
"I also urge the contingent to pay special attention to preparation, not only in terms of training and competitive readiness but also in terms of taking care of health and daily needs," said His Royal Highness.
"I also hope the athletes and officials will abide by the Commonwealth Games Federation's values of humanity, equality and destiny that represent a source of inspiration and unity for the millions of Commonwealth citizens," he added, before presenting the national flag to the contingent's chef de mission Pg Anak Sofian Pg Anak Hj Ibrahim.
This year marks the second time the Sultanate is joining the Games, with the country's inaugural participation at the last edition in Pune, India in 2008 also involving three athletes in two sports.
Mohd Aiman Abdullah and Asher Jeremiah Khan flew the flag in the tennis competition while Maria Grace Koh was the country's lone representative in swimming.
Aiman and Khan made it to the quarter-finals of the doubles competition and reached the second round of the singles event while Koh who at 15 was already a five-year veteran of the team was unable to qualify for the finals in any of the seven events she swum in.
A trip to the podium would undoubtedly turn heads this year but both Raup and Landa must have already told their charges that breaking their personal bests would be a more realistic target.
Lim and Sea are no strangers to the national set-up, with the former one of the country's two swimmers at last month's 14th Fina World Championships in Shanghai and the latter a seasoned regional age-group campaigner.
Rozmacynthia is probably the least experienced of the trio, the Sports School student only making her international debut during the 6th Southeast Asian (SEA) Junior Athletics Championships in Jakarta two months ago.
The contingent, which also includes a physiotherapist, will depart on Monday.
Courtesy from Brunei Times