KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 1 — The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah and the Raja Permaisuri Agong Tunku Hajah Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah expressed pride in the achievements of the country’s F20 shot put athlete, Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli at the Tokyo Paralympic Games even though the athlete’s gold medal win was disqualified.
Through a post on Istana Negara’s official Facebook page, Their Majesties also expressed pride in Muhammad Ziyad’s outstanding achievement in breaking his own world record with a throw of 17.94 metres (m) despite the decision of the appeals committee being not in favour of the athlete and Malaysia.
“Their Majesties both expressed the hope that Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli would be patient with the test he faced, and not lose heart or give up on the issue of the cancellation of his victory.
“His Majesty also expressed the hope that he (Muhammad Ziyad) will continue to work and remain focused in the hunt for success in upcoming tournaments,” said the post.
For His Majesty, according to the post, Muhammad Ziyad has given the best of himself and for the country, and hopes that the spirit shown by the athlete would serve as an example to all Malaysians.
Apart from that, the King also called on the relevant parties to fine-tune the reason for Muhammad Ziyad’s victory disqualification so that it will not recur.
Yesterday, the world sports arena was rocked by the Tokyo incident when Muhammad Ziyad was disqualified as the gold medalist in the men’s F20 shot put event with a record throw of 17.94m which is a new world record.
He was classified as “Did Not Start” (DNS) or did not start the match following protests against him by the Ukrainian team claiming that the shot put champion was late to report to the waiting room before the event took place.
The controversy that hit the seventh day of the Games saw Ukrainian athlete Maksym Koval announced as the eventual gold medalist with a throw of 17.34m, thus breaking Muhammad Ziyad’s world record of 17.29m held at the 2017 World Athletics Championships in London.
The silver medal went to fellow Ukrainian Oleksandr Yarovyi with a record throw of 17.30m while the bronze went to Efstratios Nikolaidis of Greece (15.93m). — Bernama