They are all great opponents, but I need to be confident that I can win against them. Like in pre-PON, I managed to win a gold medal
Banjarmasin, S Kalimantan (ANTARA) - Wrestling remains the strength of the South Kalimantan contingent to bag gold medals at the 20th National Sports Week (PON) in 2021 in Papua.

Fahriansyah, 33, is one of South Kalimantan's aces in wrestling at the 20th National Sports Week (PON) being held in Papua. He is one of the nine wrestlers sent by the South Kalimantan contingent to compete at this year’s PON and defend the contingent’s history of winning gold medals for wrestling at the national games.

Born in Rantau, Tapin District, South Kalimantan, on November 26, 1987, he will again compete in the men’s freestyle wrestling in the 86-kg category. He qualified for the PON event in Papua this year after winning a gold medal in the pre-PON event.

Fahriansyah does have a long history of representing South Kalimantan in PON. During his PON debut in the 17th East Kalimantan PON in 2008, he brought home a gold medal in the 74-kg category. Subsequently, at the 18th Riau PON in 2012, he again defeated his opponent and maintained his gold medal position.

However, during the 2016 West Java PON, he failed to win a gold in the men’s wrestling 86-kg category and won the bronze medal instead. The injury he suffered made him lose to an opponent, whom he actually won against during the pre-PON event, whereas in the 2015 pre-PON, he won a gold medal.

Related news: Roxana carries South Kalimantan's hopes for gold in wrestling

Hence, he is determined to win back his gold medal during this year’s PON, which may be his last PON since the national wrestling regulations in PON limit the maximum age to 35 years for the participating athletes.

Having won gold at the pre-PON, Fahriansyah is optimistic of replicating this performance in PON, as he has squarely gauged his opponents’ abilities during previous matches.

“They are all great opponents, but I need to be confident that I can win against them. Like in pre-PON, I managed to win a gold medal,” he affirmed.

He vouched to continue to work hard to prepare his best in order to perform optimally during matches later, so he could realize his dream of bringing home a gold medal in wrestling. Amid the pandemic, Fahriansyah will continue to comply with the health protocols and maintain his stamina under the guidance of his coach.

The wrestler believes he can achieve success by practicing hard, staying disciplined, and following the guidance of his coach.

Related news: Raharjati Nursyamsa surpasses Veddriq Leonardo's climbing world record
National team wrestler

Fahriansyah is not a newcomer in the world of wrestling in Indonesia since he had become a member of the national team for wrestling and represented the nation in several SEA Games.

He has delivered several brilliant achievements at the SEA Games. In his SEA Games debut in 2007 in Thailand, he successfully bagged a gold medal for Indonesia. The national team then sent him to represent Indonesia again at the 2009 SEA Games in Laos, and he won another gold.

However, during the 2011 SEA Games, when Indonesia was hosting the event, he could not secure a gold and managed to win a silver instead. Nevertheless, he bounced back in the 2013 Myanmar SEA Games and added another gold under his belt.

Apart from the SEA Games, he has represented the nation at the Asian Games thrice before despite not being able to bring home any medal.

Related news: PON: Desak Rita wins gold for Bali in sport climbing

Becoming a wrestling athlete

Fahriansyah was born in Rantau, Tapin District, on November 26, 1987, to Ishak and Siti Aisyah. He is the seventh child of 10 siblings. When he was a child, Fahriansyah attended elementary and junior high school in Tapin District and thereafter continued his high school education in Banjarmasin City.

His talent in wrestling was not inherited from his father and admitted to just being an ordinary child, who liked wrestling. With the guidance of a wrestling coach from his homeland, Suhaimi, he began to hone his skills in wrestling.

“The first time I started to train was in 2003 when I was still a high school student,” he remarked.

Related news: Bali scores three golds in judo on third day

On account of his rising potential in wrestling, he joined the student education training center under the Education Office.

Young Fahriansyah then began to take wrestling seriously. His efforts in training paid off when some regional coaches noticed his talent and included him in higher competition events. The peak was achieved in 2008 when he was sent to represent South Kalimantan during the East Kalimantan PON and managed to come back home with a gold medal.

This time, he will again represent South Kalimantan for the XX Papua National Sports Week (PON) 2021.

The PON 2021 is being held from October 2 to 15, 2021. At least 6,400 athletes and 3,500 officials from 34 provinces across Indonesia participate in the national games that feature 37 sports.

Related news: Details of seven PON venues in Papua inaugurated by Jokowi

Related news: PON XX opening ceremony in Papua starts

Editor: Fardah Assegaf
Copyright © ANTARA 2021