The Brunei karate team of Mohammad Fadilah Sanif, Mohammad Jamil Hj Abd Hamid, Mainuddin Hj Mohamad and Muhammad Fida'iy Sanif won bronze in the men's team kumite in Jakarta yesterday. Picture: Infofoto
Muhammad Fida'iy Sanif finally
finished on the podium at the
26th SEA Games yesterday.
Picture: BT/ Jason Thomas
National karate team win another bronze despite having only 4 karatekas
Brunei would be blessed if each of its teams here at the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games were as successful as karate.
Despite turning up at Tennis Indoor Senayan Stadium at the Gelora Bung Karno Sports Complex with only four karatekas, the team have proved their point by winning a medal in each day of competition.
They shared bronze with Malaysia in the men's team kumite yesterday, with Mohammad Fadilah Sanif winning silver in the men's below 67kg kumite on Sunday and Mohammad Jamil Hj Abd Hamid delivering the Sultanate its first medal of the Games when he finished joint-third with Vietnam's Pham Quang Duy in the men's above 84kg category on Saturday.
The karate competition ended yesterday and national coach Hj Okhida Simangasing doesn't have much to complain about.
"Our goal was to better our haul at the 2009 Laos SEA Games where we won four bronze medals but that was from eight exponents," he said yesterday.
"Now we won one silver and two bronze with four athletes, so I think it's an improvement from Laos," added the Indonesian.
However, yesterday's bronze could very well have been a silver if the team had more than four exponents.
Other countries all have five karatekas, with some even registering seven for the team kumite which includes two reserves. The team kumite is divided into five individual fights in different weight classes, and the first country to win three advances to the next round.
Brunei started its campaign yesterday with a 3-1 win over Myanmar in the first round (quarter-finals) courtesy of wins from Mohammad Jamil, Mainuddin Hj Mohamad (men's below 75kg) and Mohammad Fadilah's younger brother Muhammad Fida'iy (men's below 55kg).
The Sultanate went on to meet the Philippines in the semi-finals, which was where their lack of players came back to bite them.
They lost the match 5-0 after Mohammad Fadilah and Muhammad Fida'iy failed to get past their opponents with Brunei forced to admit defeat since rules state that each team of four who lose two matches automatically lose the tie.
Moving on to the repechage, they beat Laos 3-1 with Mohammad Jamil, Mohammad Fadilah and Muhammad Fida'iy winning their matches but Mainuddin drawing his.
Indonesia went on to claim gold after beating the Philippines 3-0, with Malaysia defeating Vietnam by the same scoreline in the second repechage.
"I'm still grateful for what has happened. This is all a gift from God," said Hj Okhida, though he did admit having five players would have been ideal.
"Hopefully the athletes will all continue to train and represent Brunei," he added.
The quartet were among the eight that Brunei sent to the Laos SEA Games. The same four were at last year's Guangzhou Asian Games in China where the country's contingent of eight athletes in four sports returned empty handed.
Of the four from Vientiane that are in Jakarta now, only Muhammad Fida'iy didn't finish on the podium though he has that corrected now.
Courtesy from Brunei Times