AMER­I­CAN MIS­SION

Shalin and Co out to strike hard on PWBA Tour

New Straits Times - - Sport - AJIT­PAL SINGH ajit­pals­ingh@nst.com.my

MALAYSIA aim to make a big im­pact on the United States’ bowl­ing scene.

The na­tional bowlers will be gun­ning for ti­tles when they re­turn for a sec­ond straight year to com­pete in the pres­ti­gious Pro­fes­sional Women’s Bowl­ing As­so­ci­a­tion (PWBA) Tour.

Na­tional coach Hol­loway Cheah has picked Sin Li Jane, Es­ther Cheah, Shalin Zulk­i­fli, Syai­datul Afi­fah Badrul Hamidi, Natasha Roslan and Siti Safiyah Ami­rah Ab­dul Rah­man for the mis­sion.

They will com­pete in four PWBA Tour events: Wi­chita Open (which starts on Thurs­day, Lin­coln Open (June 8-10), Detroit Open (June 15-17) and the Play­ers Cham­pi­onships in Green Bay (June 21-15).

For the record, Malaysian bowlers have won nu­mer­ous ‘Open’ ti­tles in ev­ery con­ti­nent in re­cent times but they have yet to achieve any in Amer­ica.

Re­gional ri­vals Sin­ga­pore cur­rently hold the brag­ging rights with four PWBA Tour ti­tles since 2015.

Jazreel Tan won the 2015 Lub­bock Sports Open, fol­lowed by Ber­nice Lim in the USBC Queens, Cherie Tan in the Sacra­mento Open and New Hui Fen in the Smith­field Open, all in 2016.

Hol­loway hopes his bowlers will make their mark and re­turn with at least one ti­tle.

“The PWBA Tour at­tracts the best in the world. We made a break­through last year and I hope we can build on it and make fur­ther in­roads this year,” said Hol­loway.

Last year, Li Jane be­came the first Malaysian to fin­ish run­ner-up in a PWBA Tour event, the Detroit Open and fifth in the USBC Queens.

Syai­datul was the coun­try’s next best per­former with a third place in the Wi­chita Open.

Shalin, who was not in last year’s squad (due to foot in­jury), is mak­ing her first ap­pear­ance in the tour since com­pet­ing for three sea­sons be­tween 2008-10.

Her best re­sult was fin­ish­ing sixth at the Salvino Scor­pion Cham­pi­onship in Illi­nois in 2008.

“A ti­tle from the tour will be a dream come true for Malaysian bowl­ing and I be­lieve it is achiev­able,” Hol­loway added.

Mean­while Ge­orge Tan has re­signed as the sec­re­tary of the Malaysian Ten­pin Bowl­ing Congress due to health rea­sons.

(Clock­wise from top left) Sin Li Jane, Es­ther Cheah, Shalin Zulk­i­fli, Syai­datul Afi­fah, Natasha Roslan and Siti Safiyah Ami­rah Ab­dul Rah­man.

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