Mixed Team For SEA Games 2021
Chaired by the OCM President, Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Norza Zakaria, the OCM Selection Committee at its meeting today, decided that the composition of Team Malaysia to the upcoming SEA Games 2021 will comprise young and experienced athletes depending on the unique circumstances surrounding each sport and the respective National Sports Associations.
Following the SEA Games 2019 in Manila, the view of the government and the OCM is to send a young team to the next SEA Games. The main objective was for us to invest into our young athletes and provide them with the opportunity and invaluable experience to kick-start their career.
Consultations were done individually with National Sports Associations and also the National Sports Council in September last year, to further explore the idea of sending a young team to the SEA Games 2021.
At today’s meeting, the OCM Selection Committee, comprising of Dato’ Ahmad Shapawi Ismail, Dato’ Mohd. Nazifuddin, Mr. Ahmad Faedzal, Dato’ Sieh Kok Chi and Dato’ Wira Mazlan Ahmad, was presented with several different possible Team Malaysia composition. The OCM Selection Committee took into account the effects of the Covid-19 on the athletes, officials and National Sports Associations whereby preparations have been impacted as well as local and international tournaments cancelled and postponed.
The postponement of SUKMA 2020 was the straw that broke the camel’s back particularly for the younger athletes. The SUKMA 2020 was one of the platforms where young athletes would be selected for SEA Games 2021.
This deprivation of tournaments is not only difficult for the athletes and coaches, but have also created challenges for the NSAs and the OCM in terms of selection of athletes and assessing their readiness and competitiveness nationally and regionally.
Further, the Vietnam Organising Committee has taken a very conservative approach to this upcoming SEA Games due to the uncertainty caused by Covid-19.
Taking into consideration the above, the OCM Selection Committee will be meeting individually with each National Sports Association between now and 15 March 2021 to determine the right mix of athletes for each sport.
The criteria of Category A and Category B will be maintained. Nonetheless, as part of our push towards and emphasis on junior development, should a young athlete demonstrate strong future potential, the OCM Selection Committee reserves the right to include the athlete into Team Malaysia even if the criteria are not met.
TAN SRI DATO SRI NORZA ZAKARIA
CHAIRMAN, OCM SELECTION COMMITTEE