Team Diaz model formula for success –Chairman Ramirez

- Jun Lomibao

TOkyo—philippine Sports Commission (PSC) Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez emphasized on Wednesday that the Team Diaz (TD) model is testament to a comprehens­ive and effective template that guarantees success on the Olympic stage.

TD refers to Team Hidilyn Diaz who, on Monday, resulted to Diaz winning the country’s first Olympic gold medal.

After her silver medal in Rio de Janeiro 2016, the PSC board heeded the requests of the Samahang Weightlifi­ting ng Pilipinas to fully support Diaz as she set her sights on Tokyo 2020.

“We have limited resources but we saw her potential so we took the chance,” Ramirez said.

The Team Diaz, Ramirez said, consisted of the hiring of a foreign coach, strength and conditioni­ng coach, masseuse, sports psychologi­st and sports nutritioni­st.

Diaz had all of them. Seeing the effect, Ramirez and PSC commission­ers Celia Kiram, Arnold Agustin, Ramon Fernandez and Charles Raymund Maxey provided the same support— based on their customized requiremen­ts—for gymnast Carlos Yulo, pole vaulter EJ Obiena and judoka Kiyomi Watanabe, all Tokyo Olympians.

“I have always said that experience is an advantage. It took Hidilyn four Olympic cycles to finally attain her golden dream,” said Ramirez, who was also PSC chairman when a then 18-year-old Diaz competed in her first Olympics in Beijing 2018.

The PSC has quietly supported the national team, spending at least P2.7 billion on training, uniforms, foreign exposure, equipment, nutrition, foreign coaches and technology.

Ramirez said Tokyo 2020 is in itself a template and jumping board for athletes who could deliver medals in Paris 2024.

“I am looking forward to Paris 2024, which has now become rosier in terms of medal expectatio­ns,” Ramirez said. “By then, we have a more mature team to field.”

“I think it gives everyone more impetus to plan and start their preparatio­ns,” Ramirez said. “But in the meantime, let’s savor this Tokyo Olympics success.”

 ??  ?? PHILIPPINE Sports Commission Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez says Hidilyn Diaz’s success is a team effort.
PHILIPPINE Sports Commission Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez says Hidilyn Diaz’s success is a team effort.

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