The Philippines is set to field 584-athlete and 161-official delegation to the Hanoi 31st Southeast Asian Games.
The figures were arrived at during a meeting among Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino, chef de mission Ramon Fernandez and Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) officials on Thursday.
“We understand the situation because of the budgetary constraint in the PSC, so we have to employ belt-tightening measures as regards to officials and equipment,” Tolentino said in a statement.
The POC initially set a 627-athlete delegation to the SEA Games that opens on May 12 and ends on May 25.
Tolentino said 80 athletes from various national sports associations (NSAs) are on appeal for the delegation as falling under the Group B category. This means their travel expenses will be shouldered by their NSAs.
The PSC has yet to determine the exact budget for the SEA Games participation, although Fernandez already announced a ball park figure of P200 million.
Filipino athletes will still be competing in all but one — Chinese chess —of the 40 sports in the Hanoi program.
Deputy chiefs of mission Pearl Managuelod and Carl Sambrano also participated in the virtual meeting.