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Sports delegation chief sorry for missing SEA Games gold medal target

Mohd Nasir Ali, however, reiterates that the 40-gold goal was a realistic one.

Bernama
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The Malaysian contingent wave during the parade of nations at the opening ceremony of the SEA Games at Morodok Techo National Stadium, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, May 5. Photo: Reuters
The Malaysian contingent wave during the parade of nations at the opening ceremony of the SEA Games at Morodok Techo National Stadium, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, May 5. Photo: Reuters

Chef de mission to the 2023 SEA Games, Mohd Nasir Ali apologised to all Malaysians following the national contingent's failure to achieve the 40-gold target at the biennial games in Pnomh Penh.

Mohd Nasir said the 677 athletes who shouldered Malaysia's challenge had fought hard and described the haul of 34 gold, 45 silver and 96 bronze medals this time as the best achievement that could be produced.

"I humbly wish to apologise if the 40-gold target was something hoped for but didn't achieve.

"But the 34 gold won are medals of quality, I am confident that we can improve on this 34-gold haul," he told the Malaysian media.

The 34-gold haul saw the Malaysian contingent record their worst performance since collecting 31 gold medals overall in the 1995 edition in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
 
However, based on the actual position, Malaysia finished the competition in the worst position at seventh place for the first time in the history of the SEA Games after occupying sixth place in the edition in Hanoi, Vietnam last year.

Commenting further, Nasir reiterated his stand that the 40-gold target was a realistic one.

He said setting the target at 40 gold was not made casually after three meetings were held previously to finalise the number of gold medals that could potentially be collected.

"We held three meetings so it (the target) was not a last minute thing, and we also discussed the target with each association, so after this, we need to go back to the associations and ask for an explanation," he said.

In the meantime, he did not feel that short preparation was the main factor contributing to the failure of the national contingent, although he admitted that some sports faced problems during the preparation period.
 
Without revealing the identities of the sports, he said the core sports had indeed been prepared earlier while some of the less popular sports were still allowed to perform despite short preparation.

Meanwhile, Nasir said Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh together with the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president (Mohamad Norza Zakaria) will provide details on the performance and achievements of the athletes at the 2023 SEA Games at a performance summary press conference in Kuala Lumpur this Friday.

"This decision does not mean that the KBS (youth and sports ministry), OCM, MSN (national sports council) or ISN (national sports institute) do not want to face the media (here), but a detailed analysis of the performance of the Malaysian contingent needs to be done one by one," he said.

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