Burma’s sports fans will be able to snatch up free tickets early next month to cheer on the country’s Southeast Asian Games athletes at all of the December sporting events except football matches.
“This is a special program for citizens and it is also intended to get crowds at all sporting events, to get full national spirit,” said Naw Tawngn, a member of the National Olympic Committee.
The 27th biannual SEA Games will include 35 sporting events, 34 of which fans will be able to attend free of charge.
On Tuesday, state-run newspaper The Mirror stated that citizens would only need to present their national registration cards at pick-up points in Naypyidaw, Rangoon and Mandalay beginning early next month. The exact date and locations of the ticket distribution will be announced soon in daily newspapers.
“Audiences from other countries will come to the SEA Games. I think there will be an arrangement for them, with passports instead of national registration cards, to distribute free tickets,” said Min Tun, general manager of Accord Myanmar Service, the authorized ticket sales agent for the Games’ opening and closing ceremonies.
He added that ticket sales for opening and closing ceremonies would begin in November after ticket prices and quantities are confirmed by the SEA Games organizing committee.
“Our opening and closing ceremonies tickets can be purchased by locals and foreigners,” Min Tun said, adding that an online payment system will be made available for booking through Accord’s website.
Min Tun said the Myanmar Football Federation will organize SEA Games football ticket sales.
Purchasers of tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies, and football matches, will also need to obtain separate free tickets if they wish to attend any additional events. Organizers are asking ticketholders to bring all of their tickets to each event that they plan to attend.
Forty-eight days remain until the opening ceremony of the SEA Games, which will be hosted by Burma for the first time in four decades. The Games will run from Dec. 11- 22 in the capital Naypyidaw, Rangoon, Mandalay and Ngwe Saung beach.
The opening and closing ceremonies of the Games will be held inside Wunna Theikdi Stadium, said to be the biggest sporting venue in Burma and built by the Burmese tycoon Zaw Zaw of Max Myanmar Group.
The full list of events for which free tickets will be distributed is: archery, badminton, athletics, basketball, billiards, body building, boxing, canoeing, chess, chinlone, futsal, cycling, equestrian, golf, hockey, judo, karatedo, kempo, muay, pancak silat, petanque, rowing, sailing, sepak takraw, shooting, table tennis, taekwondo, traditional boat, volleyball, vovinam, weightlifting, wrestling, wushu and aquatics.