Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin. PHOTOS: RAHWANI ZAHARI
BY James Kon
Eighty-seven national athletes will represent Brunei Darussalam in 14 sporting events at the 30th Southeast Asia (SEA) Games in the Philippines from November 30 to December 11.
The events are Aquatics, Athletics, Billiards, Golf, Fen-cing, Football, Karate-do, Lawn Bowls, Netball, Pencak Silat, Polo, Taekwondo, Tenpin Bowling and Wushu.
The Brunei Darussalam contingent will comprise 45 coaches and technical offi-cers, eight managers and 20 secretariat officers.
The announcement was made during a press conference by Permanent Secretary (Admi-nistration, Finance and Estate) at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports Pengiran Mohammad Amirrizal bin Pengiran Haji Mahmud on Monday.
In attendance were His Royal Highness Prince Haji Sufri Bolkiah, the President of Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council (BDNOC); Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin, Vice President II of BDNOC Haji Muhd Zamri bin Dato Paduka Haji Hamdani as the Chef de Mission of Brunei Contingent to the Philippines SEA Games and Secretary-General of BDNOC Haji Zuraimi bin Haji Abdul Sani.
His Royal Highness Prince Abdul Mateen, His Royal Highness Prince Haji Jefri Bolkiah and Her Royal Highness Princess ‘Azemah Nikmatul Bolkiah will compete in the Polo event, while Her Royal Highness Princess Fadzilah Lubabul Bolkiah will lead the Netball team.
Pengiran Mohammad Amir-rizal highlighted that it is the fourth time the Philippines has become the host of SEA Games. The last time the Philippines hosted the event was in 2005.
The 30th SEA Games is managed by Philippines SEA Games Organising Committee (PHISGOC), he said, adding that “Fifty-six sports will be competed in 530 events.
Permanent Secretary (Administration, Finance and Estate) at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports Pengiran Mohd Amirrizal bin Pengiran Haji Mahmud speak during the press conference. PHOTOS: RAHWANI ZAHARI
Attendees during the event.
“The competitions are divided into clusters areas namely Clark Cluster (10 venues and 19 sports), Subic Cluster (nine venues and 15 sports), Metro Manila Cluster (13 venues and 21 sports) and South Luzon Clusters (seven venues and nine sports).” With the participation of 14 sporting events, Brunei Darussalam will compete in venues of all four cluster areas namely Athletics, Aquatics, Golf and Lawn Bowls, which are in Clark Cluster; Pencak Silat in Subic cluster; Billiards, Tenpin Bowling, Football, Fencing, Karatedo, Wushu and Taekwondo in Metro Manila cluster; Polo and Netball in South Luzon clusters, which are in Calatagan and Santa Rosa, Laguna.
In terms of preparation, the permanent secretary said that the association held continuous training since 2018.
Intensive training started from August 2019 with warm up games and trial out within and outside the country.
For Aquatics, a swimmer was given a scholarship by FINA to train in Phuket for a year while for bowling, a bowler was given sport scholarship by Sam Houston University, Texas to train in Texas for a year.
The Brunei Polo team had trial and warm-up games in Spain and Thailand, while for Golf, the athletes were provided with coaching services from Thailand’s expert and are training at The Empire Hotel & Country Club. The Brunei Wushu team held intensive training in China in June and October. Netball had intensive training in Melbourne in August and September in Singapore. The team will have sparring games within the country with clubs from Australia in November.
The Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports said, “We are proud of some of the achievements by our athletes including a Tenpin bowling athlete who got a scholarship in the United States. She did well in tournaments in Singapore and Malaysia recently. Our Wushu athletes have also done well in the Asian Wushu Junior championship. We see the improvement in the young golf team who won several tournaments locally. Recently they were among the top 10 in the Miri tournament. Their improvement came from the continuous training at The Empire Hotel & Country Club which is of international standard. There are a lot of achievements including our swimmers who beat their personal best time in 2019.”
A team welcoming ceremony will be held on November 28 at the Athletes Village, Clark.
Meanwhile, the opening ceremony will take place on November 30 at the Philippine Arena, Bulacan.
The official closing ceremony of the SEA Games will be held at Stadium Athletics, New Clark City on December 11.
During the question-and-answer session, the availability of Halal food at the SEA Games was raised. In response, Haji Muhd Zamri bin Dato Paduka Haji Hamdani replied, “During the Chef de Mission meeting in July, the organiser has given its guarantee on providing Halal food. They also brought Halal food suppliers for the SEA Games during the meeting and were introduced to the delegations.”
-- Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin