IT was joy for Shalin Zulkifli but agony for Zulmazran Zulkifli in the trios event of the bowling competition at the SF Strike Bowl in Bangkok yesterday.
Malaysia’s bowling icon Shalin delivered when it mattered most to lead the women’s trios to victory but Zulmazran failed to spare in the deciding frame and the men’s team lost the gold medal, settling for the bronze – four pins behind winners Singapore.
Shalin combined with Esther Cheah and Zatil Iman Abdul Ghani to take the gold with a score of 3,554.
The trio had taken a good lead after the first block of three games played on the long oil conditions but two poor games by Shalin in the fourth (167) and fifth (159) allowed the Thais and Singaporeans to occupy the first two spots.
But Shalin struck a high 254 in the final game – her highest game in the tournament thus far – to get the Malaysian team back to the top.
Thailand’s Aree Gunnalada, Saowapha Kunaksorn, Angkana Netrviseth finished second on 3,513 pins and Singapore’s Evelyn Chan, Jasmine Yeong-Nathan and Amanda Ng took the bronze on 3,489.
The second Malaysian trios of Sharon Koh, Siti Safiyah Amirah Abdul Rahman and Zandra Aziela Ibrahim Hakimi finished sixth with a 3,373 total.
For Zatil and Esther, it was their second gold in the competition after their triumph in the doubles the previous day.
The 29-year-old Shalin was glad to finally land a gold after settling for the bronze in both the singles and doubles.
“I tried hard but just couldn’t get the lines in the fourth and fifth games. The lanes on short oil were challenging,” she said.
“I was struggling and that cost us our lead and we needed to get high scores in the last game. The coach (Holloway Cheah) helped me to make some changes and fortunately Esther and I managed to get it right.”
The Singapore trio of Shaun Ng, Jason Yeong-Nathan and Remy Ong emerged as champions on 3,490, just one pin more than Indonesia, represented by Ryan Lalisang, Haqi Rumandung, Oscar Oscar.
The other Malaysian trio of Daniel Lim, Alex Liew and Mohd Syafiq Ridhwan Abdul Malek posted 3,351 for seventh place.
Holloway said that he had decided to leave out Syafiq and Zandra for today’s five-man and five-woman team events.
“The most dejected man today is Zulmazran. He is demoralised but I hope he will bounce back tomorrow. I think we are on the right track to win a double (in the team events) again in the Games,” said Holloway.