Brunei's Mazlan Hj Yahya in
action in the singles event of the
26th SEA Games in Palembang
yesterday. Picture: BT/ Yee Chun
IT was game over for national petanque player Mazlan Hj Yahya at the 26th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Palembang, Indonesia.
The 41-year-old Bruneian failed to advance to the next round of the singles event after losing both his matches yesterday at the Petanque Pitch of the Jakabaring Sports Complex.
Mazlan only won one out of five games on Saturday and had to win both his matches yesterday to advance to the next round.
However, he was stopped in his tracks by Malaysia's Ahmad Safwan Ibrahim losing 13-7 to kill off any of his chances.
He was going for some bragging rights, but the defending champion Chan Mean Sok of Cambodia defeated him 13-9 in his final matchup.
Despite the results, Mazlan is taking the positives out of the competition considering that this is his first major international event.
"There was a lot of pressure considering this was the first international tournament for me. I'm now looking forward to improving after learning some new strokes from the other competitors," said Mazlan during an interview with The Brunei Times yesterday.
"I believe that I lack the exposure compared to my opponents as I only get to go out to play and train once or twice a year," he added.
"I never gave up though and I believe that I managed to give them a challenge despite them being the best players in the region," he continued.
The national petanque coach Somsak Juychunprasert felt that his athlete had given his best in the cometition.
"He (Mazlan) put up a good performance considering that we were playing against the top ranked countries and we lack technique compared to them," said Somsak.
"We're not at their level yet, but we hope to continue our training to get there," added the Thai.
"The biggest difference is that we haven't got enough sparring compared to our opponents who have gone overseas for months just to prepare for the competition," he continued.
Mazlan only managed to get an overseas training stint in Thailand from Sept 15 to Oct 15.
The manager of the team Hj Rosmin Hj Md Hassan felt that Mazlan didn't play to his full potential over the past two days.
"He was only at 50 per cent considering the pressure, focus and experience. He couldn't do what he wanted," said Hj Rosmin.
"But, it was still a satisfactory performance from him ... now we're going to look for more young blood to come for training after seeing other teams send youngsters to compete," he concluded.
Mohamad Abdillah Tamin is the other player representing the country in the sport and he will take to the pitch for the shooting event on Wednesday.
Courtesy from Brunei Times