COMMITTEE RELEASES INITIAL LIST OF SEA GAMES SPORTS
The Philippines’ SEA Games organizing committee rolled out the initial 30 sports which will most likely give the country the leverage it needs in the chase for the overall title when the 11nation sportsfest unfolds from Nov. 30 to Dec. 10 next year.
“We have to improve our standing from sixth to at least top 3,” said Philippine Olympic Committee president Ricky Vargas on Thursday at the conclu- sion of the SEA Games Federation Council meeting at the Shangri-La Hotel in Taguig.
Mandatory sports such as athletics and aquatics have been listed as well as combat sports judo, jiujitsu, karatedo, taekwondo, boxing, muay, arnis, wushu and wrestling/kurash, disciplines where the Philippine gold-medal production will come from.
Men’s basketball, the country’s perennial gold source, was prioritized in the roster, which included archery, billiards, bowling, cycling, fencing, golf, gymnastics, sailing, triathlon, volleyball, weightlifting and dancesport.
“Let’s show our best foot forward as hospitable hosts and give the best we can,” said Vargas, cochair of the organizing committee with Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano and Philippine Sports Commission chair Butch Ramirez.
“It would be best if we can get the overall championship and wewill strive to do so,” Vargas added .
The 30 sports, a combination of Olympic and Asian disciplines, were approved by the representatives of the SEAG Federation Council. The POC will still accommodate suggestions for additional sports until June 13.
POC chair Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino said the opening ceremonies would be held at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan, while the closing rites are set at Clark New City, which organizing committee secretary general Tats Suzara identified as the main hub of the event.
Apart from Clark and Subic, where water sports will see action, Suzara said several sports would be held in Metro Manila with MOA Arena and Cuneta Astrodome hosting basketball, and Mall of Asia’s SMX serving as venue for medal-rich boxing, gymnastics, muay and wushu.
“Some venues will be permanent while some venues are temporary. We have also identified facilities that needs to be upgraded and refurbished,” Suzara said.