Wednesday February 27, 2013
Azizul and Fatehah receive timely boo$t in their road to Rio
By K. RAJAN
PETALING JAYA: Malaysia’s dream of bringing home an Olympic gold medal from track cycling received a tremendous boost from Yayasan Sime Darby (YSD), who have pledged a RM2.85mil sponsorship for Azizulhasni Awang and Fatehah Mustapa.
YSD had previously supported seven Malaysian cyclists for the 2012 London Olympic with a RM2mil sponsorship over a 30-month period.
Azizul and Fatehah made the cut to compete in the London Olympics in the keirin and sprints but neither returned home with any medals.
The 3½-year funding, from February this year to August 2016, will cover Azizul and Fatehah’s logistics, competition entry fees, racing attire and allowances. It will also be used to cover their participation in 42 races under the Road to Rio programme.
YSD chairman Tun Musa Hitam said they would continue their support following Azizul and Fatehah’s strong showings at the London Olympics.
“We believe that our chance of winning an Olympic medal in track cycling in Rio is bright,” he said after presenting a mock cheque to the duo at the Sime Darby Convention Centre yesterday.
“Azizul and Fatehah have shown their capabilities in London and we hope that with our support they can do better in Rio.”
Azizul, 25, thanked YSD for their support, saying it would put them on the right track to win an Olympic medal in Rio.
“We may have failed in London, but that doesn’t mean we’ll continue to fail. YSD’s continuous support will spur us to work harder and win an Olympic medal in Rio,” he said.
“YSD’s sponsorship also shows their commitment in helping Malaysian athletes and I hope more companies will step forward to help us athletes.”