MANILA, Philippines - The chef-de-mission of the Philippine Team to the 27th Southeast Asian Games yesterday said it’s too early to issue a forecast on how the Filipinos would perform in Myanmar.
“Maybe after six months we can make a projection,” said Philippine Soft Tennis Association president Jeff Tamayo following his appointment as chef-de-mission to the Myanmar SEAG.
The Games are set Dec. 11-21, and the Philippines is hell-bent on improving on its sixth-place finish in Laos in 2011. Tamayo said the goal is to do better than that.
“The most important thing is not to be dislodged,” he said.
“And the main challenge in my job is how to motivate the athletes to perform better. For the meantime, we will focus on the conditioning of our athletes,” said the retired military officer.
Philippine Olympic Committee chairman Tom Carrasco of triathlon said last week the country should strive harder to improve on its standing in the SEA Games.
“We are not promising the moon. But we will be happy if we end up a decent fifth or fourth. But if we can finish third, that would be a bigger achievement,” said Carrasco.
“But not sixth or worse seventh because that’s already unforgivable,” he added.
During yesterday’s POC executive committee meeting, National Golf Association of the Philippines president Tommy Manotoc was also nominated as chef-de-mission to the Asian Youth Games in Nanjing, China on Aug. 16-24.
“But has yet to accept the position,” said POC first vice president Jose Romasanta of Manotoc.
POC president Jose Cojuangco also said Steve Hontiveros of the Philippine Handball Association will keep his post as POC secretary-general.
Tamayo said on top of his plans as chef-de-mission is a meeting with the athletes who will represent the country in SEA Games where the Philippines won the overall title in 2005.
“Before making any projection or before buckling to work I want to see the athletes first and meet them in the flesh. I want to see who is ready or not,” he said.
Tamayo also wants to make sure who among the previous gold medalists for the Philippines will still be around in December or if they are still fit to compete.