Selangor Journal
State executive councillor for youth, sports, and entrepreneurship Mohd Najwan Halimi speaks during the handover ceremony of Menteri Besar Selangor (Incorporated) donations to the Selangor Archery Association and Selangor Rugby Union for the 21st Malaysia Games in Sarawak, at MBI’s headquarters in Shah Alam, on June 24, 2024. — Picture by NUR ADIBAH AHMAD IZAM/SELANGORKINI

Sukma 2024: Selangor eyeing gold rush of 61

SHAH ALAM, June 24 — The Selangor contingent is targeting a haul of 61 gold medals for a top-three finish at the 21st Malaysia Games (Sukma XXI), which will take place in Sarawak from August 17 to August 24, said the state executive councillor for youth, sports, and entrepreneurship Mohd Najwan Halimi.

Despite facing various challenges including financial constraints, he is confident that the target can be achieved while realising the ambition to end the biennial meet in the top three rungs.

“To deal with the challenge, the state has expanded cooperation to local authorities, district offices and agencies under the state government that each adopt certain sports associations as foster teams to help them make the best of preparations.

“We do not want the fund constraint to be a problem, and through collaboration with these strategic partners, we are confident that it will not be an obstacle to achieving 61 gold medals,” Najwan said.

He was speaking to the press after the RM100,000 sponsorship ceremony by Menteri Besar Selangor (Incorporated) to the Selangor Archery Association and the Selangor Rugby Union respectively, today.

Najwan added that he will also discuss with the state leadership for an additional allocation of RM2 million to RM3 million to strengthen the Sukma contingent’s preparations after the state’s allocation of RM8 million in March.

Among the gold prospect events are rugby, archery, aquatics, athletics, women’s football, shooting, sepak takraw, and silat. At Sukma 2022, the Selangor contingent finished in fifth place, with 130 medals, including 31 gold, 55 silver and 44 bronze.

Meanwhile, the Negeri Sembilan contingent is modestly optimistic about winning more than 20 gold medals at the Sarawak Sukma with its financial strategy of pairing state agencies or business companies with sports associations.

Contingent head Mustapha Nagoor said that nearly 500 athletes are scheduled to participate in 30 events at the biennial games. Among the medal prospects are cycling, boxing, athletics, shooting, and football.

“I am satisfied with the preparations of each sport as they take part in pre-Sukma competitions to gauge their abilities. Our gold medal target takes into account that 30 per cent of our participants are national athletes representing the state.

“The training camp for our athletes is on Aug 2-3 to ensure the athletes’ fitness and mental preparation are good,” he said after the appointment ceremony of ‘patrons’ for the Negeri Sembilan Sukma contingent and the presentation of funds to state sports associations in Seremban today.

Mustapha, who is also the state youth and sports development committee chairman, said they are also working with several agencies or companies to select sports in the state to assist the associations financially.

“This ‘1 company-1 sport’ approach can also help sponsor associations to also train more back-up athletes. I have met 10 companies and discussed the importance of involvement in sports for the state,” he said.

— Bernama

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