KUALA LUMPUR – The Malaysian Sepak Takraw Association (PSM) will not waver from its orginal decision for Myanmar’s traditional sports chinlone to be competed when Malaysia hosts the 2017 SEA Games.
PSM president Datuk Ahmad Ismail said they are firm on getting the sports which is similar to sepak takraw to be contested in the biennial games after receiving the full support of PSM affiliated members.
In fact, he said chinlone was an exhibition sports in several local championships such as the 2015 Khir Johari Gold Cup Championship in Penang in January as well as the ISTAF Super Series Championship in Melaka in February.
“We will continue but the event (to be competed in 2017) will only be decided by the SEA Games Organising Committee in June next year,” he said.
Ahmad was speaking at a media conference after the launching the 2015 Sepak Takraw League championship (STL) by Youth and Sports Minister, Khairy Jamaluddin.
“We also discussed with the International Sepak Takraw Federation (ISTAF) secretary-general Datuk Abdul Halim Kader who had in principle agreed to feature it (Chinlone). I see no problems so far,” he said.
For the record, Malaysia won one silver and one bronze medal in chinlone at the 2015 SEA Games in Singapore in June.
Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) honorary-secretary, Datuk Low Beng Choo was earlier quoted as saying that OCM would list chinlone in the 2017 SEA Games even though Malaysia had earlier protested against the event which was considered odd.
On the 2015 STL Championship, Ahmad said PSM and championship rights holder, Asia Sports Ventures (ASV) agreed to change the format of the championship from regu in the first edition to team events to have more competition among the teams.
The eight teams taking part in the second league championship which offers an overall cash prize of RM78,000 are Gomo Warriors of Kelantan, Black Panthers (Penang), City Flyers (Kuala Lumpur), Southern Tigris (Johor), East Coast Surfers (Terengganu), Northern Rangers (Kedah), Green Titans (Melaka) and the Malaysian Armed Forces.
The eight teams will compete in a round robin format starting tomorrow until Nov 22 and each team is only allowed to send three regus for each match.
The top four teams will qualify for the semi-finals on Dec 12 before the final one day later and all matches will be played at Arena Sentosa, Jalan Klang Lama, here.
The champions will bring home a cash prize of RM40,000, the runner-up (RM20,000); third place (RM10,000) and the fourth place RM5,000.
The best tekong, best killer and best feeder will take home a cash prize of RM1,000 each.
STL is a cooperation between PSM and ASV, a subsidiary of Astro to manage, develop and promote sepak takraw at the global level.