Despite Success, Singapore 'Unlikely' To Bid For Southeast Asian Games
A Singapore bid to host the Asian Games "appeared unlikely" despite its successful Southeast Asian Games held in state-of-the-art facilities this month, according to the AFP. Senior sports officials "gave a thumbs-down to an Asiad in Singapore," signaling that hosting Asia's version of the Olympics was not in the city-state's sights. The costs of organizing an Asian Games are prohibitive, "as seen last year when Hanoi pulled out of hosting the 2018 edition." Team Singapore Chef de Mission Tan Eng Liang said, "I do not see us spending a lot of money just to hold the Asian Games. Personally, I do not see how Asian Games will contribute very significantly despite the amount of cost and the organization that are needed." Singapore "already has much of the infrastructure for major sports events" after the completion of its $1B Sports Hub last year. But Singapore Sports Institute Head Bob Gambardella said that Singapore's strategy "was to host single, high-level events rather than multi-sport showpieces." He said, "I think what we're looking at [is] single major international events like the WTA [Finals] and ways in which we can leverage off that kind of a tournament over the next four years to catalyze the sport in the country" (AFP, 6/16).