Malaysians Upset Over Paralympics’ Decision To Disqualify Ziyad Despite Breaking World Record
Malaysian Paralympic athlete Muhammad Ziyad bin Zolkefli was the pride and joy of our nation yesterday after the shot putter not only managed to land first place in the men’s shot put F20 event, but also setting a new world record with his throw. However, the celebration was short-lived after the Tokyo Paralympics committee decided to disqualify Ziyad following a protest by the Ukraine team.
The team had protested that Ziyad and two other competitors were late to enter the call room, which is where athletes are considered to be in competition mode and escorted at all times by technical officials until they complete their event. Following this, the competition officials were quick to withdraw Ziyad’s result of 17.94m, while Ukraine’s Koval Maksym won gold with his result of 17.34m.
Despite a counter-protest lodged by Malaysian officials, the Tokyo Paralympics committee remained unchanged with their decision to crown Maksym as the winner. Naturally, many Malaysians and even non-Malaysians were unhappy about the decision, saying it was unprofessional for the officials to allow Ziyad to compete if he had violated any rules in the first place.
“This is a shameful decision. An absolute disgrace that goes against the spirit of the Paralympics. If it was a call room violation, you should have not allowed them to compete in the first place. Mean spirited and petty. A stolen gold medal and world record," said former youth and sports minister Khairy Jamaluddin on Twitter.
But even when he was robbed of his victory, Ziyad still took to Instagram to apologise to Malaysians and thanked everyone for supporting him, even though he shouldn’t be the one apologising at all!
In fact, Malaysians should be the one thanking and praising Ziyad for always making the country proud with his hard work and dedication in every competition.