M-League teams closer to kick-off

THE M-League is set to restart sooner than expected as teams are likely be allowed to conduct full-contact training later this month.

A proposal on the resumption of full-contact training for teams and combat sports will be tabled at the ministers’ special meeting on the Movement Control Order on July 9, said Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican yesterday.

The minister said he will also propose for the resumption of competitions for selected non-contact sports (individual events, motorsports, extreme sports and recreational activities). Both proposals are subject to government’s approval.

The latest development will be welcomed by the sports industry, which has been hit hard by Covid-19, especially football.

FAM thanked Reezal for taking the initiative to propose the restart of full-contact training.

“This is great news for the football community. It offers hope to the possible restart of the M-League,” said FAM president Datuk Hamidin Amin yesterday.

If close-contact training is given the go-ahead, it will allow players to regain their competitiveness and match fitness.

FAM had initially set a September restart for the suspended M-League but they hope to resume it in mid-August. Currently, team sports are only allowed to conduct non-contact training.

Reezal said the ministry will hold dialogues with operators of private sports fields and courts as well as football and futsal academies soon.

“It is aimed at getting feedback on national sports development and proposals to improve the existing standard operating procedure.” he added.

The suspension of the M-League since March 16 has left many teams facing financial losses after gate collections and sponsorships were badly affected.

Some companies have terminated their contracts with M-League teams as they can no longer sustain the sponsorships.

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