AS the countdown to the Malaysia Games (Sukma) 2018 in September begins, all Perakians would be able to get a taste of the prestigious national event being hosted in the Silver State for the second time.
Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir revealed that the games’ events will be spread out in all 12 districts of the state.
He said the new approach to hosting the games was planned for the rakyat as he wants them to be a part of the bi-annual public occasion.
He said a total of 26 sports tournaments and 369 events are expected to be held concurrently throughout all districts from Sept 12 to 22.
“We want Perakians to enliven the occasion and this is how we can make our turn to host the Games special as no one will be left out.
“This has never been done before. Currently, we are planning the logistics and ironing out several wrinkles to ensure the games will go smoothly with new hosting style,” he said after attending the Sukma XIX Perak 2018 launching ceremony at the Amanjaya Roundabout last Saturday.
Zambry said the state has set a goal to emerge as overall champion with a target of 70 gold medals in the games.
“I am confident that we can achieve our goal if every athlete and officer involved is determined, disciplined and well-trained.
“Perak has produced many athletes whose stellar achievements allow them to represent the state and the country in international tournaments.
“For an event in our home state, this shouldn’t be any different. Apart from vying for medals, I also want our athletes to face their counterparts from other states with fierce competitiveness and honour,” he said.
Around 11,000 athletes and officials from 14 state contingents are expected to arrive in Perak.
This year will be the state’s second time hosting the games, currently in its 19th edition. Perak first played host to the games’ fifth edition in 1994.
During the launching ceremony, excitement and enthusiasm were palpable in the air as the crowd cheered to the ceremony’s theme “Wow! Kita Hebat!” (Wow! We Are Great!)
The ceremony started at 2pm with a lineup of performances and activities such as a netball competition, street soccer competition, stage shows and an automobile exhibition featuring an array of stylish scooters and cars.
After Zambry’s arrival at 9pm, the 3,000-strong audience were treated to an exciting drum performance that incorporated the use of water effects that spurted into the air.
The audience also saw Perak’s beauty and sights through a breathtaking video montage by Tourism Perak.
At the climax of the ceremony, Zambry launched Sukma XIX Perak 2018’s official logo, as well as the games’ mascot called Chor.
Renowned composer and award-winning singer Datuk Wah Idris appeared on stage to sing, introducing to the crowd this year’s Sukma theme song “Wow! Kita The Greatest!”
Zambry then flagged off the Wow! Kita Hebat! Cycling event, also at the roundabout, before the ceremony ended.