Friday, April 26

3,500 athletes, officials for 21st Asia Masters in December

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Snowdan (centre) speaks to reporters yesterday as Dr Ong (second, right), Karim (second, left) and Pulaithiran (right) look on. — Photo by Muhd Rais Sanusi

KUCHING: Assistant Minister for Youth and Sports Datuk Snowdan Lawan has revealed that about 3,500 athletes and officials will arrive in Kuching for the 21st Asia Masters Athletics Championship from Dec 2 to 6.

Speaking at a press conference held at the State Stadium yesterday, he said the athletes are aged 35 and above including some who are over 90 and 100 years old.

Kuching won the bid over two other cities to host the continental championship last held two years ago in Rugao, China.

“It is indeed very interesting to watch all golden senior citizens running, jumping and throwing at this ripe age. We hope this championship will promote healthy lifestyles among our people,” Snowdan added.

Malaysia Masters Athletics Association (MMAA) will be handling the technical aspects of the event while Sarawak Sports Council (SSC) will handle the logistics.

Two secretariats – one in Kuching and another in Kuala Lumpur – have been created.

“Promotional brochures have also been distributed during various events namely the World Masters Athletics Championship in Spain in Sept last year, at the Asia Pacific Master Games in Penang (also in Sept last year) and at the 32nd Malaysia International Masters Athletics Championships in Kuala Lumpur (in October 2018). We are working according to the schedule, and the 21st AMA technical handbook will be uploaded on the website and distributed to all AMA affiliates by the end of May,” Snowdan said.

Malaysia is expected to field about 600 athletes and two venues – the State Stadium and Sarawak Stadium – will be used for the championship.

A torch run will also be organised for the event.

It will kick off in Singapore which hosted the inaugural championship in 1981.

Also present at the press conference were Malaysia Athletics Federation president Datuk Karim Ibrahim, MMAA patron Datuk Seri V Pulaithiran and Sarawak Sports Corporation CEO Dr Ong Kong Swee.