We have been working overtime at the IFMA international office on the 2010 SportAccord Combat Games. As of 27 August, we are one year away from the competition in Beijing. The next plenary meeting for the Games will take place in Lausanne, Switzerland (home of the IOC) during the month of November which will usher us into the next phase of planning.
There are a few items I would like to address as we get closer to the Games. IFMA has become a strong organisation but we must increase our international activity and events. I am witnessing AGM's in which we are in total disagreement. Some countries have not held proper qualifications for our upcoming World Championships. You must make sure the athletes representing your countries in international competition are the very best. The IFMA World Championships are the opportunity to showcase your most talented athletes.
As you know, the 2009 World Championships are a qualifying event for the Combat Games in Beijing. Muaythai will be in the international spotlight at the competition and we must all work together to make sure we take only the highest calibre athletes to Beijing. If we don’t set and maintain high competition standards, it is not fair to the athletes. It is important that all our qualifications are held to the highest standards of fair play. Referees and judges will also be evaluated using strict criteria to determine who will working at our most important competitions.
IFMA will be monitoring the activities of all member countries to make sure that everyone is working within our Constitution. We want to unite our sport in every country. We will establish some new committees at our meeting during the Championships. This is an opportunity for those individuals who really want to work hard towards our goals. There will be no need for signing up for the sake of having your name listed on the form, we need people to help drive us into the future.
There is no need for politics or infighting as we must work together. Only IFMA can be recognised by the IOC and our goal is to gain IOC recognition within twelve months. This can only be done if we strictly follow our Constitution, the Olympic movement and the ethics which are so deeply rooted within our sport.
Friends, we are half way there. We can feel confident that our President Dr. Sakchye Tapsuwan, has the deepest understanding of sport. We have a very hard working international office and you can pay your respect to these girls by lending your cooperation as they work over 60 hours a week to keep everything running smoothly.
I have written a press release which I urge you to put on your websites, publish in your magazines, or forward to your NOC's and highest sport governing bodies. We have a lot of work to do. I am looking forward to seeing you all in Bangkok for 9 days. Let's use this time to form working groups and set a united goal to show Beijing and the IOC that we are ready to take the final steps towards IOC recognition.
Let's kick off our campaign, "Muaythai into the IOC".