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Malay Mail

KUCHING, Aug 21 — Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg today questioned the rationale behind the decision by the National Sports Council (NSC) to drop taekwondo from next month’s Malaysia Games (Sukma).

He urged the Ministry of Youth and Sports to review the national policy on taekwondo, just like football, silat and darts.

“Taekwondo must be listed (in the coming Sukma) and there must always be consistency to include the event,” he said at the closing of the Premier of Sarawak Borneo Sup International Taekwondo (WTF) Championship 2022 which attracted about 800 athletes and officials from 18 countries.

Abang Johari expressed his regret that NSC has dropped taekwondo from Sukma to be held in Kuala Lumpur from Sept 29 to Oct 8 this year.

The premier said taekwondo was listed as one of the events in the last few editions of Sukma.

“You can’t disrupt the event otherwise it will affect other events in Sukma,” he said.

“If that is the case, we cannot develop taekwondo to help our exponents to improve themselves. There must be consistent policy in our sports,” he said.

Sarawak Taekwondo Association (STA) president Azizul Annuar Adenan hoped there will be more attention paid to taekwondo to help boost the confidence of the young taekwondo exponents.

He added the state taekwondo contingent in the past Sukma not only walked away with gold medals but also took the Sukma taekwondo crown as well.

“The excellent performances of our local athletes have since proven that we, Anak Sarawak, can also perform well away from home in fighting for the state,” Azizul said.

He said with the opportunities offered by WTF and its technical crew, the state potentials who joined the national team training programme also did the state proud in many recognised events such as SEA Games, Asia Games, Asean Games and various world taekwondo championships.

Azizul, who is also the state assemblyman for Tanjung Datu, said STA now has 20 clubs, 300 coaches and 20,000 members.

Apart from taekwondo, diving was also dropped from Sukma.

In both events, Sarawak had the potential to win gold medals.

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