2016 is a historic year for Malaysia.
Not only did Team Malaysia score high at the Rio Olympics (read: Badminton mixed doubles, men’s singles, men’s doubles, women’s synchronised diving, cycling, Paralympics), but our very own karate expert Syakilla Salni Jefry Krisnan made history by being the first Malaysian to hold the #1 ranking in the World Karate Federation (WKF) Karate 1 Premier League Series for the women’s kumite below 55kg category.
The 25-year-old national athlete finished this year’s season with a whopping 2,115 points after 4 successive podium finishes out of the 7 legs she participated. Besides that, her teammate Shree Sharmini Segaran finished the season with 880 points and is ranked 8th.
According to The Star, Syakilla won bronze in Istanbul, Turkey earlier this month. In April, she also defeated world champion Sara Cardin of Italy in Dubai, wining gold.
On the other hand, Shree Sharmini bagged bronze medals in Salzburg and Istanbul.
As karate will be making its debut at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the Malaysia Karate Federation (Makaf) has transitioned Syakilla and Shree Sharmini to the lower weight categories.
“We are proud to see Syakilla become the world’s #1 ranked exponent in her category. She is also the first South-East Asian exponent to do so,” said Makaf secretary Vincent Chen.
Meanwhile, Makaf is hoping that Syakilla can cinch gold at the World Karate Championships, which will be held in Linz, Austria, from 25th – 30th October.
Good luck at the World Championships Syakilla! We’re so proud of you :)