Preparations for 20th Malaysia Games gets underway in Johor amid Covid-19

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican (third from left) gives the thumbs up after visiting several venues for Sukma XX in Johor July 7, 2020. — Picture courtesy of the Sukma XX Johor secretariat
Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican (third from left) gives the thumbs up after visiting several venues for Sukma XX in Johor July 7, 2020. — Picture courtesy of the Sukma XX Johor secretariat

JOHOR BARU, July 7 — Despite the Covid-19 pandemic and Malaysia’s movement control order (MCO), the Sukma XX Johor secretariat has continued preparations for the state to host the 20th Malaysia Games now expected to be held in the first quarter of 2021.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican visited several games venues yesterday and pronounced them nearly complete.

“For example, the Larkin Aquatic Centre is currently just lacking a warm-up pool which can be completed in less than a month,” Reezal said in a statement today.

Reezal, who is also Kepala Batas MP, said a meeting will be held soon to decide on moving forward after the recovery movement control order ends on August 21, and which will be used as a guideline for the Sukma Games next year.

Johor Tourism, Youth and Sports Committee chairman Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi said preparations for Sukma never stopped despite the forced postponement due to the MCO.

“Our focus remains on successfully hosting Sukma Johor — our first since 1992 — hence ensuring all aspects related to the games are of the highest quality,” he said in a statement.

Thirty-nine venues state-wide have been selected for the games.

A total of 32 sports, including 16 compulsory sports, 15 optional sports and one demonstration sport (silambam), will be contested.

The games will be held in three districts, with Johor Baru hosting the bulk of the programme with 28 events, Muar will be hosting three (canoeing, weightlifting and silambam) while Kota Tinggi will host the remaining two, cruise and bike riding.

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