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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Azizulhasni: Fatherhood Won't Slow Me Down

PETALING JAYA: Fatherhood has never stopped top Australian cyclist Shane Perkins from succeeding on the track, despite having to juggle between daily training and fulfilling his duties as a doting dad to two kids. Two world titles in individual keirin and team sprint two years after the arrival of his first son Aidan in 2008 and an Olympics bronze medal in London last August are testament to that. And Malaysia’s own track cycling ace Azizulhasni Awang is determined to do the same thing now that he is officially a father.
The 25-year-old welcomed a new addition to the family on Tuesday night when his wife, Athiah Ilyana Abdul Samad, gave birth to a healthy baby girl in her hometown in Ipoh. The proud father is glad everything turned out well as his wife was not due to deliver until Nov 18. “She gave birth to our daughter, who weighs 3.99kg, at 6.30pm.

My wife first complained of abdominal pain in the morning and was taken to the operation room in the afternoon," said Azizulhasni (pic). “The doctor advised her to deliver by Ceasarean-section as the baby is quite big. I feel on top of the world now that I am a father ... after waiting for months. “It feels greater than winning a gold medal. “I’m just glad both mother and child are okay,” said a proud Azizulhasni, who plans to name his child when she is exactly a week old.

 The cyclist, however, will be returning to Melbourne early next month to resume training, but he is determined not to miss out on the joys of parenthood. “My wife and baby girl will stay with my in-laws until the year is over. “I will take them to Melbourne after that. “If my wife decides to work, I’ll bring my daughter to the track,” said Azizul, who is only the second Malaysian after Josiah Ng to ride in an Olympics final in London in August. “I think everything can be sorted out. Shane brings his children to the track and he often says that his family is his biggest inspiration. He still became world champion and if he can go through these things, there is no reason why I can’t.” Azizul, a two-time World Championship silver medallist and Guangzhou Asian Games gold medallist, is skipping the second leg of the Track World Cup in Glasgow next weekend. He did not compete in the first leg of the World Cup in Cali last month either. Ummi Hamimah and Malek Marcus McCrone will carry the Malaysian challenge in the World Cup meet at the newly-built Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow. - The Star

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