By RAJES PAUL
KUALA LUMPUR: Diver Yeoh Ken Nee will be the flag bearer of the Malaysian contingent for the 25th SEA Games in Laos.
The 26-year-old Ken Nee was chosen in favour of shooter Hasli Izwan Amir Hassan and he will lead the contingent into the stadium for the opening ceremony on Dec 9.
Ken Nee has been winning honours for Malaysia in the last three Games. In the absence of Rossharisham Roslan for this edition in Vientiane, he will partner Bryan Nickson Lomas in the men’s 3m springboard synchronised event.
The Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) secretary, Datuk Sieh Kok Chi, said that Ken Nee was selected for his vast experience as a national athlete.
“It was between Hasli and Ken Nee. Hasli has also been representing the country in the SEA Games and he has also won honours for the country on all occasions,” he said.
“We chose Ken Nee because his event starts later the next day. Hasli has an early start in the rapid fire pistol event and we did not want him to be too tired after the opening ceremony and affect his chances of winning a medal.
“If Hasli is still around on the final day of the Games, we will pick him to lead the contingent for the closing ceremony (on Dec 18).”
The flag-handing ceremony to the Malaysian contingent will take place tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Kok Chi also said that the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) president, Datuk Nadzmi Mohd Salleh, had withdrawn as the chef-de-mission of the contingent for the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi next year due to health reasons.
And the OCM have named the president of the Malaysian Archery Association, Tan Sri Halil Abdul Mutalib, to take over the job.