SINGAPORE // Vietnam will not face any penalty for withdrawing from hosting the 2019 Asian Games, the influential Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) said on Thursday.

OCA president Sheikh Ahmad Al Fahad Al Sabah made the comment after a Vietnamese delegation expressed regret for the withdrawal during a visit to the body’s headquarters in Kuwait.

“The unique [nature] of Asian sports is our strong unity and solidarity, which will be on top of any kind of penalty within [the) Asia sports family,” Sheikh Ahmad said in a statement.

“Our unity and solidarity are very unique -- there isn’t any kind of penalty, but support and understanding,” he added.

Vietnam last week said that for financial reasons it had decided not to host the Games -- the world’s biggest multi-sports event after the Olympics – and would explore ways to formally withdraw.

The southeast Asian country has been hit by falling economic growth and with scant existing facilities to hold such a large event, public opposition was growing.

“Vietnam isn’t experienced enough in hosting such a big scale of sports event,” Vietnamese sports minister Hoang Tuan Anh said in the OCA statement.

“After understanding all of those obstacles and careful consideration, we are looking for OCA’s sympathy and understanding on our withdrawal.”

Indonesia is considered the strongest candidate to take over the 2019 Games, although a source told AFP last week that two other candidates had emerged in East Asia.

Incheon in South Korea will host this year’s edition of the quadrennial tournament, featuring nearly 50 sports and disciplines with more than 400 gold medals on offer.

Barbie

Director: Greta Gerwig
Stars: Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Will Ferrell, America Ferrera
Rating: 4/5

The specs

Engine: 6.2-litre V8

Transmission: ten-speed

Power: 420bhp

Torque: 624Nm

Price: Dh325,125

On sale: Now

UAE SQUAD

Ali Khaseif, Mohammed Al Shamsi, Fahad Al Dhanhani, Khalid Essa, Bandar Al Ahbabi, Salem Rashid, Shaheen Abdulrahman, Khalifa Al Hammadi, Mohammed Al Attas, Walid Abbas, Hassan Al Mahrami, Mahmoud Khamis, Alhassan Saleh, Ali Salmeen, Yahia Nader, Abdullah Ramadan, Majed Hassan, Abdullah Al Naqbi, Fabio De Lima, Khalil Al Hammadi, Khalfan Mubarak, Tahnoun Al Zaabi, Muhammed Jumah, Yahya Al Ghassani, Caio Canedo, Ali Mabkhout, Sebastian Tagliabue, Zayed Al Ameri

The Matrix Resurrections

Director: Lana Wachowski

Stars: Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Jessica Henwick 

Rating:****

Sting & Shaggy

44/876

(Interscope)

Essentials

The flights
Emirates flies direct from Dubai to Seattle from Dh6,755 return in economy and Dh24,775 in business class.
The cruise
UnCruise Adventures offers a variety of small-ship cruises in Alaska and around the world. A 14-day Alaska’s Inside Passage and San Juans Cruise from Seattle to Juneau or reverse costs from $4,695 (Dh17,246), including accommodation, food and most activities. Trips in 2019 start in April and run until September. 
 

The specs

Engine: 5.0-litre supercharged V8

Transmission: Eight-speed auto

Power: 575bhp

Torque: 700Nm

Price: Dh554,000

On sale: now

Who are the Soroptimists?

The first Soroptimists club was founded in Oakland, California in 1921. The name comes from the Latin word soror which means sister, combined with optima, meaning the best.

The organisation said its name is best interpreted as ‘the best for women’.

Since then the group has grown exponentially around the world and is officially affiliated with the United Nations. The organisation also counts Queen Mathilde of Belgium among its ranks.

UAE squad

Men's draw: Victor Scvortov and Khalifa Al Hosani, (both 73 kilograms), Sergiu Toma and Mihail Marchitan (90kg), Ivan Remarenco (100kg), Ahmed Al Naqbi (60kg), Musabah Al Shamsi and Ahmed Al Hosani (66kg)

Women’s draw: Maitha Al Neyadi (57kg)

ASIAN RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP 2024

Results
Hong Kong 52-5 UAE
South Korea 55-5 Malaysia
Malaysia 6-70 Hong Kong
UAE 36-32 South Korea

Fixtures
Friday, June 21, 7.30pm kick-off: UAE v Malaysia
At The Sevens, Dubai (admission is free).
Saturday: Hong Kong v South Korea


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