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SEA Games Selection Criteria And Qualifying Standard
  • October 16th, 2008


Well its the time of the year as athletes and their coaches hone in on their SEA Games preparation. The 25th SEA Games will be held next year in Vientiane, Laos (December 13-21st, 2009)

Some 25 sports will be contested in Laos, compared to 43 disciplines when Thailand last hosted the games. This is due to financial and resources constraints by the Laotian, coming out of a difficult period after decades of war

Team Singapore from the last SEA Games came back home with two athletics medals, a gold and a bronze, both coming from our China-import Zhang Guirong (Shotput Gold, Discus Bronze). We also managed to break three national records in the form of both men’s (40.10s) and women’s (46.68s) 4×100 relays and one individual record coming from the women’s 100m by Amanda Choo (12.12s)

And hopefully next SEA Games edition we’ll do far better … The local selection criteria have been questionable at times, especially in the relays selection, so I reckon let’s hope there’s no more ‘drama’ next year. Here’s a look at the previous 2005 and 2007 Selection Criteria And Qualifying Standard and what to expect for the 2009 selection


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From Previous Year 2005

Selection Criteria

  • Selecting only those athletes whose current results and/or previous major international results indicate that the athlete is capable of a medal contention and/or a top 8 finish.
  • Athletes who can potentially win medals, even where their performance standard on the international scale is not equivalent with the general philosophy of performance based selection.
  • The average of the best 3 /5 results compared to a 2% stability performance will give the final evaluation for a selection.
  • To be considered for pre-selection athletes must be listed in the top 8 of the Best Performance list for 2004.
  • In the case of relays, there must be an expectation that the team chosen will finish in the top five. Also, a team will only be chosen where a minimum of four athletes have attained credible standards (men: 10.75 or 49.00, women: 12.35 or 58.50) during the 2004/2005 Singapore domestic season. Where a relay team is selected, six athletes will, in general, be chosen
  • Selections will be based on athletes’ performances during the trials and the domestic season especially the National Juniors Championships, All-Comers Meets and any other events specifically designated by the Selection Committee. Any international meetings overseas in which an athlete may have competed will be taken into account.
  • Pre-selected and prospective athletes must compete in the 2005 Singapore Open Championships for which they are seeking selection unless exempted in writing in advance by the Selection Committee.
  • Athletes who at any time before or after selection compete in unsanctioned events or events without a permit, compete overseas without a clearance, compete without being registered with Singapore AAA through a Member Association, or fail to provide the SAAA office with their current contact address and phone numbers, without a justifiable reason, will be ineligible for selection and/or further competition.

Qualifying Standard

  • The selection (qualifying) standards were determined by the SAAA Selection Committee based on South-east Asian Games standards (comparisons of results of last 3 SEA Games. The marks also fall within the 4th and 6th placings results of the 2001 KL SEA Games.
  • The criteria outlined above will be followed for selection, not merely the achievement of these standards.


From Previous Year 2007

Selection Criteria

  • Performances achieved in 2006 were considered for selection to the Pre-Selected Squad.
  • Performances achieved must be within 2% of the SEA standard
  • To prove competition fitness, the average best 3 performances shall be considered for continued inclusion in the
  • There will be a review of the Squad in June 2007 and a final review/ selection after the Singapore Open Championships 2007.
  • Performance must be achieved during competitions organised or sanctioned by SAA (as per SAA ’s calendar or by approval from SAA).
  • All qualified athletes must be physically and medically fit. Any injuries or problems must be highlighted to SAA as soon as necessary.
  • The team will meet at least 2 days prior to departure, for general debriefs and/or attire distribution.
  • Any possible problems that may occur should be highlighted to SAA immediately.
  • All athletes are responsible for their competitive readiness in cooperation with the National Head/Coordinating Coaches of the Coaching Panel and their personal coaches.
  • The final selection shall be done within 2 days after the dateline – Singapore Open 2007.

Qualifying Standard


For Next Year 2009

The SEA Games Selection Criteria And Qualifying Standard for 2009 is not yet out as far as I know. If it is, do inform me.

From the current trend for the past two SEA Games Selection Criteria And Qualifying Standard, it seems the overall qualifying standard has improved and will keep on improving every SEA Games edition. This is in due part to the better performances at the SEA Games with the new mark established.

To make the pre-selection squad, I would say you need to be within the 2% performance of the SEA Games standard, as used for the 2005 and 2007 selection

So I reckon for 2009 qualifying standard, the bronze finishes from the last SEA Games finishes, for which we use as a benchmark, might just mean our athletes need to break the national record to just to qualify for the team

Well there’s still some 421 days to go … the road to the SEA Games 2009 is still a long one. More focus should be emphasized on lesser ‘popular’ events such as the distance. It’s also been a long time since we had any Singapore decathlete or heptathlete represented at the SEA Games. Their standards now might not be up to par with SEA Games, but let’s groom the younger ones for the future

Not to mention the participation of the walks and pole vault here is scarce. There’s so many events our local athletics that is sorely lacking in support, its fair to say the focus is quite unbalanced. There’s more to athletics than just the sprints

There’s new faces and management at the association of ours since the start of the year and hopefully they’ll make a difference. More competitions perhaps or more athlete support by our association, and hopefully Team Singapore will have a better outing than the last one. You’ve start from somewhere and start re-building our bridges, let’s make it here right now


Posted by Uncle Sha.
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