WITH the Olympic Games postponed to next year, thus putting all his plans on hold, there is little world number 1 keirin rider Azizulhasni Awang can do but accept the current situation brought about by the Covid 19 global pandemic.
With his home base in Melbourne, Australia already on lockdown mode since last week, the 32-year old from Dungun has adhered to the #StayAtHome order and occupied his time with home schooling his 2 children and doing some training at home.
“It been alright. I’ve just been at home with the family, home schooling the kids and doing some training at home,” said Azizulhasni, when contacted.
Like the rest of the sporting world, the Covid 19 pandemic has put the brakes on Azizulhasni’s entire programme for the year, most significantly the postponement of the Olympic Games in Tokyo, to next year.
Azizulhasni had anticipated that as the pandemic had seen the Australian, Canadian and United States already announcing their exclusion from the Olympics should Japan persist in going on with it as scheduled in late July. Japan announced last week that the Games would be postponed to next year, but still called the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
“The postponement is okay for me. Now there is time to really prepare and improve on several areas before next year,” he said.
He had been on a strong vein of form, having bagged two bronze medals in the keirin and sprint at the World Championships in Berlin last month and had sealed his qualification to the Olympics well ahead of that.
“From what we know, the qualification will stand, but the question is what happens to the rest of the programme as the UCI (International Cycling Union) had announced the inaugural World League for track cycling, to be held after the Olympics,” said Azizulhasni. the 2017 keirin world champion.
“We are still waiting for the UCI to make the announcements on what the new calendar.”
While accepting the circumstances, Azizulhasni said he hoped that a vaccine for Covid 19 will be discovered soon.
“It looks like this situation with the Movement Control Orders (MCOs) around the world, we are looking at a minimum of 3 months before things recover and start getting back to normal. Looking at the situation in some European countries at the moment, it is scary.
“I can only hope a vaccine is discovered soon.”