The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) yesterday released an initial number of 642 members of the Philippine delegation to the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games which will be held from August 19-30 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tom Carassco, a senior POC official and head of the SEA Games Task Force, said the “tentative” number is composed of 493 athletes including 73 members of the developmental pool and 149 officials to include coaches.
The POC official also reported that the Philippine line up is almost 85 -90 percent complete, except for those in the indoor hockey and volleyball, whose lineup are still being finalized.
Host Kuala Lumpur has required all the other Southeast Asian participating countries to submit their final list of athletes and officials until June 30.
Carassco said the Philippines will be competing in 37 out of 38 sports disciplines lined up for the biennial meet.
He added that Filipino athletes will be taking part in 255 events out of the 405 featured events which will be played in 31 sports venues, spread out in various parts of Kuala Lumpur.
“Let us focus on the prospects of winning gold instead of looking into our problems,” said Carrasco, stressing that his group and the government through the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC), the government sports body, are exerting all efforts to give the much needed support to local athletes and coaches for the country's descent finish in the region's biggest sports conclave.
Cynthia Carreon, the country's Chef de Mission, and her sports committee are hopeful that the Philippines will harvest 50 golds, improving the country's precious performances.
For the record, Philippines won its first over-all championship with 113-84-94 (gold-silver-bronze) when it hosted the Games in 2005. Years after, the country's performance dropped to fifth-sixth place. The Philippines placed sixth in the 2015 (Singapore) edition.
The Philippines had its debut in the SEA Games ( Southeast Asian Peninsular Games ) in 1977.*PNA
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