| James Kon |
BRUNEI Darussalam is set to host the 10th Asia Youth Wushu Championships in August this year, following a signing ceremony yesterday.
The ceremony was witnessed by Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin, the guest of honour at the event.
Signing on behalf of the Brunei Darussalam Wushu Federation was Lim Boon Hwa, the federation’s newly elected President. The federation’s Deputy President Dr Md Firdaus Abdul Rahman, witnessed the signing.
Signing for the Wushu Federation of Asia was its Secretary General Chan Weng Kit. Witnessing the signing was Wushu Federation of Asia Vice President Julian Camacho.
“This is the biggest international competition that the Brunei Darussalam Wushu Federation is organising,” Lim Boon Hwa said in his remarks.
“It is expected that 20 to 30 countries in the Asian region will participate in the competition.
“We hope that with the support from the Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council, government agencies and all involved parties, the championship will be a success. This will not only further develop the sport of wushu in the country but also raise the country’s image.”
Lim revealed that the federation is also making preparations for the 30th SEA Games in the Philippines in November this year, holding training for its athletes within the country and overseas.
Commenting on the standard of the country’s wushu athletes, Lim said, “Currently the basic wushu skills possessed by our young athletes are on par with other athletes in the region. What they are lacking is experience in competing, especially in regional and international competitions, as well as a lack of resilience when under stress. These factors have on many occasions caused our athletes to fail in getting their best results in the main competition.”
He said that the reward or incentive structure for excellent athletes needs to be improved, and that the welfare assistance scheme for retired athletes also requires reviewing.
“Both issues are the catalysts to raise the spirit of the athletes to work harder during training and competition,” he said.
Speaking to the Bulletin about the competition, national wushu coach Li Hui said, “We will compete in all categories. For the U12 category, we will have four athletes, while for the 12-to 15-year-old category, we will have four athletes. For the 16-to 18-year-old category there will be eight athletes.”