The Jakarta Post
In that special moment when the Indonesian flag was hoisted during the medal ceremony following the victory of the Indonesia 2 team in the men’s speed relay final round, rock climber Muhammad Hinayah couldn’t hold back his tears anymore.
He clutched the gold medal tightly in his hands, and thought about the difficult times when he tried to prove himself in the sport. Coming from Musi Banyuasin regency in South Sumatra, Muhammad Hinayah had to stop studying at Polytechnic of the Sriwijaya University for two years so he could focus on practicing rock climbing.
“I couldn’t find better words other than this gold medal is dedicated to Indonesia and my parents, for their sacrifices and understanding,” he told The Jakarta Post on Monday.
Herman, Hinayah’s father, who is a construction worker and was present at the medal ceremony, couldn’t hide his tears when he finally saw his son’s achievement.
“He has shown tremendous spirit. Displaying such hard work and consistency that he had to leave his school. I hope he can find a way to study again after all of this is over,’ he said.
Hinayah then acknowledged that the gold medal was his first ever in his career as a rock climber. He won silver in the 2014 National Junior Championship and bronze in the 2014 Asian Championship in South Korea.
Hinayah also became the world number four after clocking in a time of 6.12 seconds at the 2018 Climbing World Cup in Moscow, Russia. As many as 128 rock climbers from 28 countries participated in the championship.
Hinayah was not alone. Two of his friends, Rindi Sufriyanto and Abu Dzar Yulianto were also members of the Indonesia 2 team. They too felt the same way as Hinayah, they carved their way to victory with a massive struggle.
The team finished in a time of 18.68 seconds in the final round of the men’s speed relay, beating the Indonesia 1 team, who finished second to take silver. The Indonesia 1 team also made a terrible mistake as they pressed the timer button improperly so they failed to get the right recorded time.
The Indonesia 2 team was initially deemed as the underdog. But they proved everybody wrong. They finished second in the first round, after the China 2 team, and clocked in 19.98 seconds. They managed to finish the quarterfinals with a better time of 19.79 seconds. In the semis, they even defeated China 2 with 18.9 seconds.
Rindi Sufriyanto, who competed as the second climber, dedicated the medal to the country and his parents at home.
Unlike Hinayah, this was not Rindi’s first gold medal, as he won a gold and two silver medals in the lead and speed categories at the 2016 West Java National Games. Rindi also took gold in the individual speed category, a silver in the overall category and one bronze in the relay category at the 2012 Asian Championship. As for Abu Dzar Yulianto, another member of the group, he won silver at the 2004 Asian Championship, one gold in speed at the 2008 KIA World X Games in China, another two gold medals at the the Jakarta-Palembang 2011 SEA Games and a gold in the speed world record relay category at the 2015 Asian Championship.
Yulianto said he would not stop climbing until he had won a gold medal at the Olympics.