Thailand hosts 6th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games next year

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 2) – The Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) released the dates for the 6th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games (AIMAG), set on May 21-30, 2021 at Bangkok and Pattaya cities in Thailand.

In a statement released last May 22, OCA Director General Husain Al-Musallam said they signed the host city contract with the National Olympic Committee of Thailand last April 23 through a virtual ceremony.

“We appreciate that 2021 is a busy year because of the new dates for the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo but we have managed to find a slot in the last week of May that is still two months before the Olympics,” said Al-Musallam.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics were postponed for a year and will now be staged from July 23 to August 8, 2021.

The OCA Director General thanked the Royal Thai government and the NOC of Thailand for accepting its third stint as the host of the quadrennial regional sporting event.

Thailand previously hosted the then Asian Indoor Games in 2005 and the then Asian Martial Arts Games in 2009, before the two competitions merged into one event in 2013 in South Korea.

“We have held many OCA events in Thailand over the past decades and, with this experience and expertise, we are confident the 6th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games 2021 will be a great success,” Al-Musallam added.

A total of 28 sports will be played in the 2021 AIMAG which are indoor athletics, cue sports, bowling, dance sport, chess, futsal (men and women), roller sports/sport climbing, short course swimming (25m), muay, jiujitsu, BMX cycling, hoop takraw/sepak takraw, kurash, floorball, netball, taekwondo, indoor hockey, karate, e-sport, badminton, pencak silat, cheerleading, sambo, indoor rowing, indoor volleyball (men and women), basketball 3x3 (men and women), traditional wrestling, and kickboxing.

Teqball and air sport (indoor drone) are the two demonstration sports for next year’s AIMAG.

During the last 2017 AIMAG in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, the Philippines took home two gold, 14 silvers, and 14 bronzes.

Jiu-jitsu athletes Meggie Ochoa and Annie Ramirez were the gold medalists for Team Philippines in the fifth staging of the games, after topping the women’s ne-waza 45 kg. and 55 kg. divisions respectively.

2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics silver medalist and weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz won a silver in the women’s 53 kg. divison while fellow Olympians Eric Cray and Kirstie Alora snatched a silver in the men’s 60 meter indoor athletics event and bronze in taekwondo women’s 73 kg. meet respectively.