United States-based Shereen Samson Vallabouy ended Malaysia’s 24-year wait for a gold medal in the women’s 400m event today.

Shereen hit the finish line in 52.53 seconds, finishing almost a second ahead of her rivals at the Morodok Techo Stadium. Vietnam duo Nguyen Thi Huyen (53.27s) and Nguyen Thi Hang (53.84s) settled for second and third place, respectively.

Shereen is the first Malaysian woman to win the 400m gold since N. Manimagalay at the 1999 Brunei SEA Games.

“I have been working hard to win the 400m gold since I first competed at the SEA Games in 2015. This makes it (hard work) all worthwhile,” said Shereen. “The training I have undergone in the US has also helped me improve, especially in terms of technique.

Shereen had last month clocked 51.80s at a meet in California to re-write the long-standing former national record (52.56s) in the 400m event which the late Rabia Abdul Salam had set during the 1993 Asian Championships in Manila.

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