KUCHING: None of the 29 sports will be dropped for the 19th Sukan Malaysia (Sukma) in Perak from September 12-22.
The 29 are archery, athletics, aquatics (swimming and diving), badminton, basketball, boxing, cricket, cycling, football and futsal, golf, gymnastics (artistic, rhythmic), handball, hockey (men’s and women’s), judo, karate, lawn bowls, muay, netball, petanque, rugby, sailing, shooting, sepak takraw, silat, squash, taekwondo, tenpin bowling, weightlifting and wushu.
They will be competed along with three demonstration sports namely fencing, volleyball and tennis.
“Yes, all 29 sports are in for this Sukma. All the directors of the respective Majlis Sukan Negeri had agreed to that in the Sukma Technical Committee meeting last Monday June 11,” Sarawak State Sports Council director Dr Ong Kong Swee told reporters in a press conference at Megalanes Sarawak, E-Mart Batu Kawa yesterday.
The meeting was chaired by Olympic Council of Malaysia secretary Dato Low Beng Choo with Datuk Ahmad Shapawi Ismail as the co-chairman.
“They also included sports events like diving and synchronised swimming that have only participation from four states.”
Ong, also chief executive officer of the Sarawak Sports Corporation, was at Megalanes Sarawak to present the state colours to the Sarawak bowling team bound for the 42nd Malaysian National Championship and 31st Interstate Bowling Championships at Sunway Megalanes, Kuala Lumpur from July 7 to 14.
“This is actually good news for us as we have been preparing our athletes, some as early as one and a half years ago.
“There were rumours that cycling and weightlifting might be dropped following reports on the problems of the velodrome and doping cases involving national elite weightlifters.
“We (Sarawak) are very concerned because cycling and weightlifting offer many gold medals and these are the events which we have good potential of winning golds,” said Ong.
He said Sarawak will not be fielding any athletes for the three demonstration sports due to budget constraint.
However, state athletes of the three sports will be sent for other exposure events as part of the state sports development programmes.
Following last Monday’s Sukma technical committee meeting, Ong said Sarawak are still maintaining its current 77-gold medal target.
“Our chef de mission Datuk Snowdan Lawan will be leading the state contingent of almost 600 athletes and officials to Perak and we have also submitted the name list of our athletes including reserves to the organiser,” he added.