Nur Suryani Mohammed Taibi Pregnant: Olympic Shooting Competitor Is Due After Games

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As Nur Suryani, 29, takes aim, she will offer up a silent prayer to Allah that   her unborn baby desists from kicking at the moment she pulls the trigger.   Her baby is due in September and, in order to compete, she has

to squeeze her bulging abdomen into the heavy body suit and jacket worn by   competitors to aid stability.

Nur Suryani has travelled to the Games with her husband, Marhazli Mohtar. He   is, in her words, a “low-ranked” policeman who had to secure government help   to get his plane ticket to London. She says her husband has supported her   Olympic ambitions throughout, although some of her friends and family have   openly questioned why she is doing it.

“Most people said I was crazy and selfish because they think I am jeopardising   my baby’s health,” said the 29 year-old. “My husband said grab it as this is   a rare chance which may not come again. Also, I am the mother. I know what I   can do. I am a stubborn person.”

Nur Suryani has already named her unborn daughter, who will be her first   child, Dayana Widyan, and recites verses from the Koran in order to soothe   her.

“Every morning I talk to her and I say: ‘Mummy is going for training. Please   remain calm. Don’t kick.’ But if the baby kicks I have to breathe easy and   let her calm down before shooting.”

Nur Suryani is ranked 47th in the world and won a gold medal at the 2010   Commonwealth Games and a bronze at the Asian Games in the same year.

She has combined her shooting with being a navy logistics officer. She has   continued to train despite suffering from morning sickness and has had to   adjust her stance slightly since she became pregnant, although she says the   extra weight has improved her stability.

The Malaysian shooting manager, Muzli Mustakim, says she does not believe   being pregnant will hinder Nur Suryani’s chance of success at the Games.

“She is very well prepared mentally. It has not affected her at all, so she is   exceptional in that respect. Some people say she shouldn’t be here, that she   should be at home if she is pregnant.”

Asked about Nur Suryani’s chances of winning Malaysia’s first ever gold medal,   Muzli says: “That would certainly make history. The mere fact she is   competing at eight months is amazing enough but [a gold medal] would be   fantastic.”

Nur Suryani herself is not getting up her hopes too high for Saturday. “I just   want to perform my best at the Games. If gold comes, thanks to God and my   baby. Who knows? Miracles can happen.”

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