The inaugural Asian Martial Arts Games (AMAG) have been postponed yet again due to the precarious political situation in host country Thailand.
Having previously been rescheduled to June 6 to 14 from the initial April 25 to May 3, the event has now been pushed back to Aug. 1 to 9.
"The delay is a psychological burden on the athletes, and will also be costly as we have to provide additional funds for a longer training period," national martial arts training camp head Madju Dharyanto Hutapea told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.
A tryout competition, the Martial Arts Friendship Games in East Kalimantan from May 17 to 19, will likely be scrapped because the host Indonesian Sports Council (KONI) lacks funds. The competition was initiated to fill the time before the first postponement of the Bangkok event.
Late last month, the government turned down KONI's request for Rp 120 billion (US$10.9 million) in funding for 2009.
Pencak silat coach Indro Catur Haryono expressed concern that the new schedule, if stuck to, would overlap with that for the national selection for the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Laos in December.
"I hope KONI will hold discussions with its sports associations to find the fairest solution possible for the sake of the athletes," he said.
He added the AMAG delay would likely not affect the athletes.
"We recently held tryouts between national and regional athletes from Central Java and Yogyakarta. The results were great, and I saw much progress in their agility, endurance and technique," Indro said.