|The closing ceremony of the Myanmar SEA Games in 2013 which signifies the next host of the Games - Singapore - in 2015. - Filepic|
PETALING JAYA: Malaysia will be represented by a 659-strong contingent consisting of 356 men and 303 women at the Singapore SEA Games from June 5-16.
The Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) finalised the number following their final selection committee meeting on March 30 and have submitted the names of the athletes to the organisers on Wednesday.
Earlier, the OCM had 610 names but that was before the inclusion of athletes from athletics and swimming.
The Malaysian Athletics Federation (MAF) and Amateur Swimming Union of Malaysia (Asum) had only decided on their respective team list after their national opens last week which served as the last qualifying platforms for the Games.
A total of 425 athletes – billed either as medal hopefuls or future prospects – will be going under Category A while the remaining 234 fall under Category B, which means they are competing under their National Sport Associations (NSAs) expenses.
But these athletes will be fully reimbursed should they return with a gold or silver while the bronze medallists will only foot half of the bill.
The Malaysian contingent also comprise 212 officials, coaches and support staff with 149 going under Category A and the rest in Category B.
Malaysia are taking part in 35 of the 36 sports with the exception of the traditional boat race.
OCM had earlier made it clear that no gold medal target will be set for the biennial Games.
Malaysia will be banking on aquatics, archery, bowling, hockey, netball, sailing, squash, waterski and wushu for the golds.
At the last Games in Myanmar, Malaysia finished fifth overall with a 158-medal haul of 43 gold, 38 silver and 77 bronze.