Azizulhasni ready for competitions after long layoff

KUALA LUMPUR Sept. 22 – Top Malaysian track cyclist Mohd Azizulhasni Awang has declared himself ready for competitive action after a long lay off from competition since suffering a freak accident during competition early this year.

“I am eager to resume competitive action after the long lay off. But right now I have to concentrate on training.

“I will have to wait until the first series of the World Cup to gauge my performance after returning from the injury,” he said when met at the Yayasan Sime Darby’s Leukemia Charity cycling event here today.

Azizulhasni, 23, the two-time World Championships silver medallist, has not raced on track since he suffered a horrific injury in the final leg of the World Cup series in Manchester, England, where his calf was skewered by a 20cm splinter on February 19.

After recovering and recuperating through a five-month rehabilitation programme under the National Sports Institute (ISN), Azizulhasni, also known as ”Pocket Rocketman” returned to Melbourne, Australia to resume training with National Cycling coach John Beasley.

“Though not fully fit, due to consistent training, I feel my performance has improved significantly. I need to undergo base training for a longer period since I had started later than the others.

“In Australia, most of my training was focused on conditioning in the gym and long distance rides. I have just started training on the track,” said the 2010 National Sportsman of the Year.

He added that in efforts to qualify for the 2012 London Olympics, he would compete in four UCI Track Cycling World Cup series and also the 2012 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Melbourne, Australia from April 4 to 8, next year.

Azizulhasni’s first competitive test is expected to be the World Track Cycling Cup in Astana, Kazakhstan from November 4-6, followed by the second series in Cali, Colombia (December 1-3), Beijing, China (January 20-22) and London, England (February 17-19.

Meanwhile, those who wished to take part in the charity ride who comprises four categories (3.3km; 7.7km; 38.5km and 100.5km) can download the entry forms from the website for information. – Bernama

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