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Share the joy: Archer Syifa Nurfifah Kamal (right) embraces coach Asep Rahman after winning the gold for West Java in the 2012 National Games (PON) in Pekanbaru on Tuesday. (JP/Jerry Adiguna)
West Java’s Syifa Nurafifah Kamal broke into tears of joy on Tuesday after defeating Megawati of Jambi 7-1 in the archery finals.
It was a momentous occasion for the 20-year-old student from the Indonesian Education University to win gold at her National Games debut.
Despite having no pre-game expectations for the gold, Syifa admitted to being nervous during the match.
“I was nervous. I had mixed emotions,” she said after the women’s individual national event at the archery field in Pekanbaru.
She is entitled to Rp 50 million (US$5,250) in cash bonuses as well as a house promised to gold medalists by the West Java administration and sports committee.
“I dedicate this prize to my parents and will send them on the haj pilgrimage,” she said.
Syifa looks ahead to the next games where she may compete in a recurve event.
Kusmiyanti of Central Java won the bronze medal after beating Khairunnisa VA of East Kalimantan in the playoffs.
None of archery’s East Java athletes, who had earned the most of the gold medals up for grabs, managed to reach the finals.
West Java failed to make it a double celebration after top seeded Asep Wandi was defeated by second seeded Basith Anzaini of East Kalimantan in a tight finals match.
The two finalists brought the event to a shootout round after ending the regular phase in a 5-5 tie.
With each of them equipping themselves with only an arrow, and spectators waiting in suspense, both Basith and Asep scored 9 in the matchup.
Officials declared Basith the winner after observing that Basith’s arrow pierced closer to the center of the target than Asep’s.
The announcement saw the East Kalimantan team members erupting in celebration.
“I was so nervous on the field because this is my first time at PON and this is a big event,” Basith said.
The 17-year-old high school student said his goal was to win the gold.
Asked about the bonuses, he said he had yet to be informed.
“I don’t know how much reward I will receive. But the gold medal is a gift to my dad, who just celebrated his birthday.”
Basith’s victory gave East Kalimantan an overall two gold medals. Their first gold win came on Sunday when the men’s team defeated favorite East Java.
East Java remains the dominant force, winning five gold medals and still attempting for more when the competition’s last two gold medals are for the taking on Wednesday.