KUALA LUMPUR: The Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) will leave it to Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh to decide on the approach to set the medal target for the 2022 Asian Games.

OCM secretary-general Datuk Mohd Nazifuddin Najib said the council had submitted two proposals to Hannah on setting targets for the Asiad, scheduled to take place in China from Sept 23 to Oct 8.

He said the target would be announced either by type (gold, silver, bronze) as usual, or the new approach of simply announcing the total number of medals expected from the contingent.

“We see that the most important thing is the overall achievement because we want the size of the contingent to justify the number of medals brought home. We also don’t want to see the (number of) gold medals becoming the main topic for the contingent, but the important thing is that (athletes from) all sports sent there perform well at the Asian Games.

“We also need to consider that following the postponement of the Games by year, China is more ready and aggressive to hunt for more gold medals, while sports in which we had hopes of gold such as bowling are not being contested,“ he said at a press conference after the OCM Executive Council meeting here today.

The 2022 Asian Games medal target will be announced during the ceremony to hand over the Jalur Gemilang to the contingent on Monday (Sept 11).

At the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games, Malaysia finished 14th overall after winning seven gold, 13 silver and 16 bronze medals.

Meanwhile, Mohd Nazifuddin said today’s meeting also discussed the preparations for the next three SEA Games, namely in Thailand in 2025, Malaysia (2027) and Singapore (2029), as well as the criteria for determining the core sports.-Bernama

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