Bahrain’s hopes of winning a medal in taekwondo events were crashed yesterday (Thursday) at the at the Fifth edition of the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.
After Jumana Mohamed and her younger sister Juwana failing to reach the medal stages of their respective weight categories, Bahrain’s third and final team member Walaa Al Doseri was also unable to improve on her teammates finish.
A 6-29 defeat to Vietnam’s Thi Anh Tuyet Tran in the under-57kg quarter-final bout sent the 20-year-old Bahrain out of the tournament and ended her dream of reaching the semi-finals, thus ensuring herself a bronze medal.
Walaa, who won the under-57kg gold medal at the Fifth GCC Women Sports Tournament, headed into this weight category as a contender.
She faced Chimi Dolma of Bhutan in the last-6 round, and lived up to many expectations by pulling off a 10-6 victory over her opponent to punch her ticket into the competition’s last eight.
However, Walaa could do little against a more matured and experienced Vietnamese opponent, who had overall strength and stamina advantage to breeze into the quarter-finals and end the young Bahraini medal quest.
Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation president and Bahrain chef de mission Shaikh Faisal bin Rashid Al Khalifa, Bahrain Olympic Committee general secretary Abdulrahman Askar and other delegation officials witnessed the taekwondo bouts yesterday.
The trio Bahrainis are being coached by Tawfeeq Nuwaiser of Jordan, who earlier described the event is a golden opportunity for his young athletes to acquire more experience, improve their skills and boost their rating globally.
Nine athletes are representing Bahrain in three sports disciplines – jiu jitsu, taekwondo and wrestling – during this 12-day games. Wrestler Adam Batirov holds Bahrain’s final hope at the games.
The 32-year-old Bahraini will be fighting for a third medal at the games on Monday, September 25, when the Men’s Freestyle -70 kg weight group events gets underway at 4pm (Bahrain time).
Batirov took part in Rio 2016 Olympics in the FS 65kg category and lost in the Round of 16 to Ikhtiyor Navruzov of Uzbekistan.?