By Sazali Abdul Aziz/The New Paper
Bali, Thursday, December 8, 2016 — Singapore won two gold medals on the final day of the World Pencak Silat Championships.
Sheik Farhan outclassed Vietnam’s Mach Quoc Hung 5-0 in the men’s Class J (90-95kg) final, while Shakir Juanda recovered from an early setback to win the Class I (85-90kg) final.
Both Singaporeans are now two-time world champions of their respective weight classes.
Farhan, who turns 20 next Friday, had triumphed in Phuket almost two years ago, while 28-year-old Shakir won the gold medal in Chiang Rai in 2012.
This is the first time since 2004 – when the world championship was hosted in Singapore – that the Republic’s silat exponents have delivered more than one gold medal at the global meet, which features 41 countries.
A jubliant Singapore Silat Federation chief executive officer Sheik Alau’ddin told The New Paper over the phone: “Farhan had no problems with his match. Shakir lost the first and second rounds – he got tossed to the mat when he attempted his first kick – but had a revival in the third round and scored enough to win the match overall.
“Overall I’m very happy because of the performance of athletes and the team behind them … Everyone has been excellent.”
With their wins, Shakir and Farhan – who is Sheik’s son – have matched the silat great for world titles which he won in 1990 and 1994.
Thoughts will now turn to seeing if they can match or even surpass Sheik’s four Southeast Asian (SEA) Games golds (won in 1991, 1993, 1995 and 1999).
For more sports news, go to The New Paper