Malaysia ended their long wait for a Paralympic Games gold medal in style as they clinched two titles in just over an hour thanks to Mohamad Ridzuan Mohamad Puzi in the men’s 100 metres T36 and shot put F20 competitor Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli in front of an improved crowd at the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
The Asian nation are making their ninth Paralympic appearance at Rio 2016, but had not finished at the top of the podium until this evening.
Puzi produced a blistering run to break their duck at the Games, clocking a Paralympic record of 12.07sec to finish comfortably ahead of Yang Yifei of China, who had to settle for silver.
The bronze medal in the race went the way of Brazilian Rodrigo Parreira da Silva, who crossed the line in 12.54.
The performance from Puzi set the tone for what proved to be an historic night for Malaysia as an emotional Zolkefli broke the world record twice on his way to sealing gold out in the field.
The World Championships bronze medallist, who claimed long jump bronze at London 2012, threw the furthest ever recorded in the classification with his first attempt of 16.40 metres before he then managed to better that effort with his fifth, launching the shot 16.84m to secure a sublime triumph for his country.
Zolkefli, who celebrated wildly once his distance had flashed up on the screen, decided not to take up his sixth attempt as his victory had already been confirmed, with Dimitrios Senikidis of Greece some way adrift of the Malaysian’s mark.
The Greek’s best attempt of 16.17m saw him claim the silver medal, while defending champion Todd Hodgetts of Australia earned bronze.