Ak Hafiy Tajuddin Pg Rositi (R)
running during one of the
relay events at the 2012 Brunei
Games. The national runners
left to compete at the World
Champions in Moscow yesterday.
Picture: BT file
The Brunei Athletics Association (BAA) is counting on Ak Hafiy Tajuddin Pg Rositi to deliver at this week's World Championships in Moscow.
The 22-year-old national runner departed Brunei for the meet yesterday, where he is set to compete in the 400m heats at the Luzhniki Stadium on Sunday.
His best time for the event is 48.67s which he set at the 2012 London Olympics, but BAA president Dato Paduka Hj Abdul Rahman Hj Mohiddin is hoping that Ak Hafiy will be able to better that.
"What we want for him (Ak Hafiy) is to perform his best," said Dato Paduka Hj Abdul Rahman in an interview with The Brunei Times before departure at the Brunei International Airport in Berakas.
"He will have to try hard to break his personal best record .
"This is the World Championships and it is the biggest athletics competition with plenty of big names, so this is definitely good exposure for our local athlete.
"He must have good self confidence, and eventhough he is not competing against the best, he really is up against himself," added the president.
Dato Paduka Hj Abdul Rahman also highlighted that Ak Hafiy has a good chance at gaining a berth at the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Myanmar in December should he be able to deliver.
"The competition is a benchmark for the SEA Games," noted the president.
"Hafiy is currently in the top-eight from the previous edition and we hope that he will be able to go faster than that for a chance to compete at the upcoming SEA Games.
"The times there will be of world standard but if we can reach a new time then it is decent enough," he added.
Ak Hafiy knows the test he faces and remains positive ahead of the race.
And like Dato Paduka Hj Abdul Rahman, Ak Hafiy is also hoping he'll produce a good time in Russia.
"I'll just try my best. I know that this will be very similar to runnning at the Olympics," said Ak Hafiy.
"My training has been okay even during the month of Ramadhan and I'm ready for the race," he added.
They also expressed their gratitude to the Department of Youth and Sports for their support.
Dato Paduka Hj Abdul Rahman and vice-president Kifli Hj Jaafar will be attending the IAAF Congress starting today and ending tomorrow.
A total of 206 nations will be taking part in the August 10-18 world meet.
The IAAF have set the entry at 45.28s for the A standard and 45.60s for the B standard for the men's 400m event.
Although Ak Hafiy's time doesn't meet the required standard, the IAAF allows each country to send one unqualified male or female athlete to participate in one individual event except for the 10,000m, 3,000m, steeplechase and the combined events.
After the World Championships, Ak Hafiy will be eyeing the Islamic Games that runs from September 22 until October 1 in Palembang, Indonesia.