Olympics : Azizulhasni storms into keirin semi-finals

Tokyo – National track cycling ace Datuk Mohd Azizulhasni Awang stormed into the men’s keirin semi-finals and move one step closer to win Malaysia’s first Olympic gold medal on a bright and glorious morning at the Izu Velodrome in Shizuoka today.

The 33-year-old former keirin world champion came in second in Heat Three to finish the race behind Japan’s Yuta Wakimoto, who won a silver in keirin at the 2020 World Championships.

Kwesi Browne of Trinidad and Tobago and Australia’s Matthew Glaetzer came in third and fourth respectively to also move into the semi-finals.

Unfortunately, Malaysia’s Muhammad Shah Firdaus Sahrom, probably still feeling the after-effects of Saturday’s (Aug 7) first-round crash, missed out on the semi-finals after finishing last in Heat Two of the quarter-finals.

The race was won by Nicholas Paul of Trinidad and Tobago, while Great Britain’s Jack Carlin, who clinched the men’s sprint bronze on Friday, was second followed by Jair Tjon En Fa of Suriname  and Maximilian Levy of Germany.

Yesterday, Muhammad Shah Firdaus, 25, suffered injuries after being involved in a collision with Briton Jack Carlin in Heat Two of the first round that saw him being rushed to the Juntendo University Shizuoka Hospital.

The top four riders from each of the three heats qualify for the semi-finals, which will begin at 10.09 am today, reported Bernama.

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