KUCHING (Feb 3): The state bowlers never really had much chance to take a break and recover throughout last year.
Coach Angelo Koay said it was ‘a long hectic 2022’, especially towards the last quarter with Sukma XX MSN 2022 and other major tournaments like Sarawak International Open, SportExcel GP finals, Singapore International Open, Junior All-Stars and Penang Pesta outing, being staged.
“Some had to manage their training sessions both on the lanes and in the gyms, while preparing for their final exams or SPM (Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia).
“It is really a planning nightmare for the coaching team to keep these athletes in tip-top condition and sharpness.
“Our bowlers have somewhat gotten used to adapting to the best they can, amidst the strenuous annual tournament schedule,” said the coach while talking about the state players’ performance at the U25 Classic Championship in Ampang Superbowl @Summit USJ, in Selangor recently.
Sarawak senior elite bowler Musayyar Khalid furnished his start for the season with a third-place finish at the Selangor event, with Abang Afiq Yazid Abang Azman and Gordon Tsen Fan Yew ranked fifth and seventh, respectively.
Their comrades Desmond Law Kwang Yew, Nur Hazirah Ramli, Andrea Tan Tze Shuen, Dayang Yumi Azreen Abang Azman and Asya Dania Azree finished 40th, 41th, 45th, 46th, and 49th, respectively.
Adding on, Koay said for 2023, Sarawak bowling would want to do something different – a more organised sports-science based ‘periodisation planning’ to better prepare the state athletes and allow them to be more competitive throughout the year and very important, for them to have proper recovery periods to avoid injuries.
“We are also facing a transitional period, especially in our boys team as four of our five Malaysia Games (Sukma) elite would be past 21 in 2024.
“This sets up the need for an even better-planned training programme to get the junior boys up to speed and fill the void (left by the seniors).”
Koay said as the team could not afford to have the normal off-season break, training would still continue albeit at lower frequency and intensity.
Sarawak’s bowling pre-season phase would commence after this break, running until the end of this March.
According to Koay, the pre-season phase is a crucial annual cycle as high-intensity and high-frequency preparations and improvements in physical, technical, tactical and psychological components of the game can be made.
He said although even in the pre-season phase, Sarawak bowling would periodically send selected athletes to compete in tournaments that they deemed fitting with their objectives and directions.
“Participation in these tournaments would be less results-based; it’s more towards observing the athletes’ response to the effectiveness of their training.
“The initial plan is just on improvisation and improvements to be made and customisation of the programme to suit the needs and maximise the potential.
“Having said all that, we still registered a hard-earned podium finish from a very competitive-seasoned field,” said Koay, referring to the Selangor outing.
“It was a very strong performance from the team as a whole as we showed positive signs from our pre-season training phase,” he added.