SEA Games : When everyone can go

The Olympic Council of Malaysia Selection Committee meets this morning to determine the final number of Athletes to the Manila SEA Games.

When there was a furore about the quality of Athletes sent for the 2018 Jakarta/Palembang Asian Games, there was swift action, with the OCM Executive Board setting up an independent panel of experts to come out with a selection policy that was fair and just.

The Panel headed by Tan Sri M. Jagathesan went about completing their task with efficiency and swiftness, meeting every Monday and came out with a document that was eventually endorsed by the OCM Executive Board and OCM Council.

But one has to ask now, were the recommendations and criteria followed or is it a case of letting individuals decided who boards the plane.

The bare fact remains – OCM has lost it hold on multi sports events, for it is all decided by the National Sports Council.

The goverment agency holds the purse strings and they determine which sport has development or not, a simple equation , missed by many,

This charade of sending plane loads of Athletes continues despite clear and precise guidelines being set.

The national sports associations will always lay claim to the fact that their Athletes are capable of delivering medals as multi sports event, that’s a given fact.

But buying into that story time and again is the fault of those who sit on these Selection Committee, with at least two of them being from government bodies with another from OCM.

There should be only those who truly understand the qualifying standards and not those with vested interests that should sit.

For instance of course NSC will back certain sports as they invested money into them and need to justify that decision, no matter how it was done initially,

So those who question NSC live with a dagger on their heads, cross us and we make sure you sit home,

Then we have the Category B where Athletes that pay their own way are allowed into the bandwagon.

Excuse me but where is the qualifying standards?

Yes it was set at lowly 8th place in the measurable sports, but is the Selection Committee sending a wrong message that we are only better then say the likes of Timor Leste, Laos and Brunei?

The best Athletes, deserving Athletes, consistent Athletes over the past 12 months ought to go.

But look at Badminton, a player ranked 200 plus is being sent while independent players are left out , just because they are independent.

Then we have Athletics that sends 22 category B Athletes, try asking for their marks, times, distances against the top 3 from this region.

Some might not even make it past the heats.

So ice hockey is on the ropes as their best players walked out. But how can you deny them a place at the SEA Games when you left out our best badminton players?

Two wrongs does not make it right, so trim the list today if the Selection Committee wants to do justice towards our sports

A firm and just decision must be undertaken by those 5 sitting on the panel.

And if we fail to achieve the desired and targetted medals in Manila, then those on the Selection Panel need to assume complete responsibility, and never sit in another such Panel,

After all they are propagating the slogan” now everyone can compete”, !

Let’s see where is the Aku Janji that all NSA’s were to sigmas a mark of accepting responsibility towards performing in Manila.

Or was that too another hogwash as was the case only the best represent the country?