Indonesia again brought proud news on the international scene. This time it came from national run athlete Lalu Muhammad Zohri who managed to score an amazing history by breaking Southeast Asia’s fastest running record previously held by former national sprinter Suryo Agung. Zohri managed to break Suryo Agung’s record while appearing in the semi-finals of the 2019 Asian Athletics Championship.
He managed to record 10.15 seconds in the semifinals and then sharpened to 10.13 seconds in the final when he won a silver medal at the Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar, Monday (4/22). Suryo’s record is 10.17 seconds which was created during the 2009 SEA Games in Laos.
Although success broke the Southeast Asian record, Zohri only became runner-up in the race. He lost to Japanese runner Yoshihide Kiryu, who scored 10.12 seconds. Nevertheless, Zohri and five other runners advanced to the final. The race will be held on Tuesday (4/23/2019) at 00.20 WIB. The five other runners in question are Kiryu, Andrew Fisher (Bahrain), Ryota Yamagata (Japan), Wu Zhiqiang (China), and Kim Kuk-young (South Korea).
Zohri’s name popped up when he first made a surprise exit as a gold medalist in the 100 meter run at the Junior World Championship in Tampere, Finland. He managed to record a time of 10.18 seconds. Only 0.01 seconds of his achievement almost matched Suryo Agung’s record at that time.
The teenager from North Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara was named the fastest man in Southeast Asia at a relatively young age of 18 years. Just for the record, Suryo Agung was even 26 years old when he scored the fastest record in Southeast Asia at the 2009 SEA Games. Zohri was actually determined to break Suryo Agung’s record when he competed in the 2018 Asian Games 100-meter run.
However, his ambition did not materialize at that time. He only recorded 10.20 seconds in the final and finished seventh.
Zohri didn’t give up. Until he arrived he managed to improve his time record at the 2019 Asian Athletics Championship at the Khalifa International Stadium. The progress was somewhat drastic. In the semifinals, then Zohri incised 10.15 seconds. The speed is faster in the final phase of 10.13 seconds. However, he had to settle for a silver medal because he lost to Japanese runner Yoshihide Kiryu, who recorded 10.10 seconds.
In fact, Zohri was at the front. He overtook Kiryu about five meters before reaching the finish line. Zohri became the second Indonesian sprinter silver medalist at the Asian Athletics Championship after Yudhi Purnomo 34 years ago.