: The Indonesian track cycling squad are hoping to receive a positive reply from the Malaysian National Cycling Federation (MNCF) to come and train at the National Velodrome in Nilai, Negeri Sembilan – venue for the SEA Games track cycling events – ahead of the 2017 Kuala Lumpur SEA Games, next month.
MNCF president Datuk Abu Samah Abd Wahab through a statement said the federation had received an application from Indonesia two weeks ago to train at the velodrome.
"I have forwarded the application to the National Sports Council (NSC) director-general for approval,” said Abu Samah who is also the president of the Asian Cycling Association (ACA).
Abu Samah said MNCF would support Indonesia’s request because Malaysia would also be seeking the approval from their Indonesian counterparts to train in the country’s velodrome ahead of the 2018 Asian Games.
"In principal we need the support and approval of the Indonesian cycling association to train in their velodrome ahead of the 2018 Asian Games. Indonesia might not consider our request if we denied them an opportunity to train here before the SEA Games,” he said.
Abu Samah however, hoped history would not repeat itself since Malaysia who were the favourites to dominate track cycling events during the 2001 SEA Games, suffered a shock when the Indonesian track cycling squad knocked out big names in the Malaysian squad.
"In 2001, we have big names like Lee Roberts and Mohd Hardi Razali. We were the favourites and expected to dominate the events but the Indonesians caused some major upsets. I hope such a fate will not befall this time around," he said.
Abu Samah said Malaysia had little knowledge about Indonesia’s prowess in track cycling because Indonesian riders hardly took part in major cycling events, especially the Asian Cycling Championships.
He added that with big names like Mohd Azizulhasni Awang and Fatehah Mustafa in the Malaysian squad, there was hope of winning at least 10 gold medals from track cycling events.