PETALING JAYA: Malaysia are set to be represented by their biggest contingents to the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia from April 4-15 and the Indonesia Asian Games from Aug 18-Sept 2.
Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president Tunku Tan Sri Imran Tuanku Jaafar said they have shortlisted at least 551 athletes (312 males and 239 females) for the Asian Games, which will take place in Jakarta and Palembang.
“Malaysia will be taking part in 37 out of 40 sports contested.
“The numbers may increase as the registration deadline is only in April.
“Some of the sports will go under category B and we will reimburse them if they win medals,” he said after the selection committee meeting yesterday.
As for the Commonwealth Games, a total of 175 athletes (99 males and 76 females) have been shortlisted.
The final numbers may be slightly more as OCM are still waiting for the list of athletes from a few sports which did not qualify on merit for the Games.
At the last Asian Games in South Korea, Malaysia were represented by 277 athletes who took part in 28 sports.
“I think this is the biggest contingent that we would send since most of the sports in Gold Coast involve team sports.
“I am glad that our athletes, especially in the optional sports, have shown improvements by qualifying on merit rather than relying on core sports such as athletics and swimming,” he said.
On the medal haul prediction for the Malaysian contingent, Tunku Imran is confident that athletes in sports such as squash, diving, badminton and track cycling would put up a good show.
Malaysia will be taking part in 11 out of 25 sports including seven para sports at the Commonwealth Games.
It will also be the first time that Malaysia are sending the women’s basketball and rugby 7s teams for the Commonwealth Games.