|Khuzaiman Ahmad (inset) won a gold for Brunei while teammate Hj Md Khairul Bahrin Hj Duraman (pic) bagged a bronze for the coutry in Jakarta last week.|
Bandar Seri Begawan - The national pencak silat team claimed their best finish ever at a world tournament last week - taking home one gold and three bronze medals at the 14th World Pencak Silat Championships in Jakarta.
Khuzaiman Ahmad clinched the sole gold medal for the Sultanate after winning the men's tanding Class E (65-70 kilogrammes) event. The victory also earned him the "Best Male Athlete" award at the tournament held from Dec 12-17 at Padepokan Pencak Silat Taman Mini Indonesia Indah in Jakarta.
In August, Khuzaiman became the first Bruneian to beat a Vietnamese in an international tanding (match sparring) event, the 21-year-old national silat exponent downing Nguyen Duy Chien in the semi-finals of the men's Class E match en route to his gold medal-performance at the 2nd Southeast Asian Silat Championships 2010. The Bruneian beat Malaysia's Mohd Al Jufferi Jamari 3-2 in the final at the Thanh Hoa Gymnasium, Thanh Hoa, Vietnam, to finish first in the event.
Khuzaiman's gold in Vietnam was the country's second at the tournament - Nurul Aimi Amalina Zainidi winning the other in the women's tunggal (single) event.
Meanwhile, the 25th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold-medallist Hj Md Khairul Bahrin Hj Duraman bagged a bronze in the men's pencak silat tunggal. Hj Md Khairul Bahrin last December won Brunei's only gold medal at the Laos SEA Games.
Norleyermah Raya, who won a bronze medal in the previous edition in Kuantan, Pahang, returned with another bronze in the women's pencak silat tunggal.
Compatriots Abd Malik Hj Ladi, Abd Rahman Hj Asli and Juffri Hj Junaidi added to the tally with a bronze in the men's regu, repeating their achievement at the 2nd SEA Silat Championship 2010 held from Aug 5-10 in Vietnam.
The medal haul, aided by Khuzaiman's gold, put Brunei fourth in the biennial competition which was participated by a total of 32 countries.
Hosts Indonesia emerged as the overall champions. Vietnam and Malaysia placed second and third respectively.
"This is our best result ever at the tournament. Khuzaiman's feat, to be honoured as the 'Best Male Athlete', is a first for the country," said team manager Pg Hj Abd Karim Pg Hj Metassan in an interview yesterday. The silat team returned from the Indonesian capital yesterday morning.
Fifteen experienced silat exponents, who have oil proven themselves capable of rising to the challenge at international competitions, represented the Sultanate at the world championships.
Written by AMIR AMIN