Sports

Outsiders Elfi, Naqib not giving up

(Above) Elfi Mustapa

(Above) Naqib Asmin.

Their personal bests are not good enough to earn them a spot at this June's South-east Asia (SEA) Games at the National Stadium.

But Singapore's 100m sprinters Elfi Mustapa and Naqib Asmin are not giving up.

Elfi, whose personal best is 10.59sec, said: "It's the only opportunity we have to win the 100m on home ground so, if I qualify, it would be a great honour.

"But, at the moment, I'm focusing on just being at my best not just for myself, but also for the (4x100m) relay team.

"In terms of our chances of winning, I think we stand a higher chance in the relay. The four of us, collectively, are on par with the Thais."

SILVER LINING

Elfi was part of the men's team that won silver in the 4x100 at the last two SEA Games, in Palembang, Indonesia (2011) and Naypyidaw, Myanmar (2013).

The 27-year-old has been running "much longer distances" in training, and has one eye on a spot in the 200m race. The qualifying mark for the 200m event is 21.47sec, while his best effort is 21.75.

The men's 100m at the Singapore Open in March could be a race to watch, after youngster Naqib also refused to rule himself out as one of the Republic's representatives in the event at the SEA Games.

The 19-year-old Republic Polytechnic student, whose personal best in the blue riband event is 10.57, said: "There's always a possibility.

"Yes, I'm up against my seniors, who are older and more experienced than me. But to qualify would mean the world to me, so I'll do everything I can to try and get the spot."