THE sixth edition of the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games (AIMAG) supposedly taking place in Thailand in the first quarter next year has been moved to November 2023.

This was confirmed by Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) President Abraham N. Tolentino on Thursday after receiving official word from the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA).

The Thailand government and its national Olympic committee (NOC) sought for deferment of the sporting meet — originally set for March 10 to 19, 2022 — on COVID pandemic-related concerns.

“The OCA fully understands and respects the decision of the NOC of Thailand, Thailand AIMAG Organizing Committee and the Royal Thai government to postpone [the Games]… due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) global pandemic,” said OCA acting president Raja Randhir Singh on the postponement of the quadrennial continental competition.

With the postponement, Mr. Tolentino said they would use the added time to good use.

“The postponement would allow our athletes to be better prepared for the AIMAG, which ranks as one of the most important multi-sport competitions in the continent,” the POC head said.

Earlier, the POC planned to send a 160-athlete delegation to the Thailand AIMAG, competing in 21 of the 31 sports programmed by organizers.

The Thai edition of the AIMAG is to be hosted by Bangkok and Chonburi.

In 2017 in Turkmenistan, the Philippines won a total of 30 medals — two gold, 14 silver and 14 bronze medals.

The gold medals were care of jiu-jitsu athletes Meggie Ochoa and Annie Ramirez. — MASM