ATHLETICS coach S. Muthiah has defended his decision to withdraw M. Vadivellan from the men’s 800m race today.
Vadivellan had been touted as a gold medal contender for the 800m event and also the 1,500m, which will be held on Tuesday.
“I felt that it was best for Vadivellan to concentrate on one event. He would be more focused on winning the 1,500m and does not have to prepare mentally for two different competitions,” said Muthiah yesterday.
The coach also pointed out that there was still a chance for Malaysia to win gold in the 800m. Mohd Jironi Riduan, who was originally entered for the 1,500m as well, will now only concentrate on the shorter distance.
When met at the stadium yesterday, Vadivellan seemed a little sad at having to forego the chance to bag two gold medals. But he supported his coach’s decision wholeheartedly.
“At the last Games in Manila, I tried too hard to impress in training and got injured.
“As a result, I was unable to deliver a single medal. So, I think that it is best for me to concentrate on only one event,” he said.