| Izah Azahari |
THE Brunei delegates who recently joined the 5th International Holy Quran Competition returned yesterday from Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The delegation comprised Haji Awang bin Haji Aji, Deputy Principal at Institut Tahfiz Al-Quran Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah (ITQSHHB) as the head of delegation; Mohd Fikri bin Haji Sharbini and Haji Ismail bin Haji Sulaiman from ITQSHHB as coaches for both participants, Mohd Zubair bin Haji Zaini from ITQSHHB and Awang Shahrin bin Haji Mohd Noor from Religious Teachers University College of Seri Begawan (KUPUSB).
Soon after their arrival at the Brunei International Airport, Haji Awang shared that this was the fifth time Brunei had participated in the International Holy Quran Competition in the Islamic Republic of Iran.
With regards to the participants’ performance in the competition held specifically for Islamic Universities internationally, he highlighted that it was apparent Brunei had the ability to compete internationally as Awang Shahrin managed to secure sixth place – out of 37 countries – topping all Asian countries in the Tarannum category.
“We are very grateful to the Syiar section for bringing in local coaches to enhance the reading skills of the participants even further,” said the head of delegation.
Haji Awang further added that they look forward to competing in such competitions and that they will be performing a post-mortem in order to learn from their experiences.
The media also took the opportunity to speak to the participants. They both expressed their sincerest gratitude to the Ministry of Religious Affairs for giving them the opportunity to compete in the overseas competition along with their coaches that have helped them throughout the competition.
Awang Shahrin shared that this was the first time he had competed in the International Holy Quran Competiton in Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran. Throughout the competition, he faced a number of challenges especially in recitation as he realised that there was a very big difference between the Asian countries’ and Middle-Eastern countries’ recitation techniques. Health was also an issue as he was not used to the chilly weather.
Awang Shahrin said that he was grateful to Allah the Almighty to be exposed to the different techniques and being able to meet with renowned international Qaris.
As for Mohd Zubair, this was the fourth competition he had participated in. He had previously took part in competitions held in Egypt, Indonesia and Mecca. He felt that the challenge for him was that the Middle Eastern participants had an advantage over them as their recitations were stronger and they were able to understand the meanings easily.
However, Mohd Zubair added that this is part of a collection of experience for him to increase his confidence and not be afraid to recite the Holy Quran in public.