Thursday July 12, 2012
Dhabitah finally picks up her first Sukma gold
NOT even a back sprain could stop Nur Dhabitah Sabri from making a big breakthrough in her third Sukma as she partnered Loh Zhiayi to a surprise gold medal in the women’s 3m springboard synchro final at the Wisma Belia Swimming Pool in Bandar Indera Mahkota.
The 13-year-old Dhabitah was grimacing in pain and needed treatment after completing the five-dive routine with Zhiayi but she still managed a big smile as the congratulations poured in.
Dhabitah-Zhiayi showed good consistency to amass 267.48 points to relegate favourites Jasmine Lai Pui Yee-Kam Ling Kar to second place.
Jasmine-Ling Kar, who won the platform synchro on Monday, settled for silver with 265.71 points.
Dhabitah was clearly delighted to have finished on top for the first time after taking silver with Zhiayi in the platform synchro.
“I have been waiting for this moment. I competed in two previous Sukma, earning a bronze on my debut and my first silver two days ago ... and I thought that was it,” said Dhabitah, a double gold medallist in her first international outing at the SEA Aquatic Championship in Singapore last month.
Zhiayi described their win as a pleasant surprise “because Ling Kar-Jasmine were the favourites”.
“They did not do well with their entries today,” said Zhiayi, after bagging her second gold following her platform triumph on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Penang’s sole representative Ooi Tze Liang closed his campaign with his second gold medal in the men’s platform.
Tze Liang, who trained with the London Olympic-bound squad in China before returning home for Sukma, was a class above the rest and closed out with a 404.20 total. He won the 1m springboard title on Monday.