Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Rescheduling has cyclists in a spin

IT isn't the easiest of travels getting to Laos during this Sea Games period, thus it is questionable why arrangements for the national cycling team have been made in such a way that allows their officials to arrive well ahead of schedule while cyclists arrive just before their events.

The hosts are already making it more difficult with some last minute changes that have affected a lot of preparations, such as the mountain bike downhill competition suddenly being brought forward by a day.

That had forced a rush in getting JR Stanly Jalip and Ghazali Hakiki to Vientiane on Monday.

The duo had to be booked on business class flights as they were the only seats available, but still arrived only at 1am yesterday.

JR Stanly and Ghazali were due to start the practice and qualifying round for their event yesterday afternoon.

The rest of the mountain bike and road cycling squad are only due to arrive tomorrow, but their team managers and coaches are already in Laos.

Chef-de-mission Datuk Dr Ramlan Abdul Aziz, when asked about the situation said the secretariat will be looking into matters regarding transfers to Vientiane and would prefer all athletes from a sport to arrive as a group.

"It was caused by the organisers bringing forward the mountain bike events. But we may also have to look into the arrivals of athletes.

" We might also have to look into rescheduling the arrivals if the athletes are arriving too late and do not have time to prepare for their events," said Ramlan.

Ramlan represented the country in the flag-raising ceremony held at the athletes village yesterday, shortly after which a commemoration ceremony of the Sea Games Federation's (SGF) 50th anniversary was held. NST

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