Number of PH athletes to Vietnam SEA Games could be finalized January, official says

Manolo Pedralvez

Posted at Oct 29 2021 05:00 AM

Organizers of the 31st Vietnam Southeast Asian Games have a called for a meeting of the 11 chefs de mission of the participating countries in the regional sportsfest that was postponed this year and will finally be held in May 2022.

“The tentative key dates and timeline leading to the Vietnam SEA Games was discussed and released during the 12th ASEAN Seniors Officials Meeting on Sports that was held online last Tuesday. Philippine Sports Commission Butch Ramirez represented the country during the meeting,” said PSC Commissioner Ramon Fernandez on Thursday.

Fernandez did not say if the December CDM meeting would be held face to face or online. 

Fernandez, appointed by the Philippine Olympic Committee executive board as the chef de mission of the Philippines contingent, said that also to be released during the meeting will be the technical sports handbooks of the 40 sports that will be calendared in the regional meet.

Conducting the SEA Games briefing was Hoang Dao Cuong, Vietnam's deputy minister of culture, sports and tourism, according to the PSC official. 

The president of the Vietnam Olympic Committee is Nguyen Coc Thien, also the minister of culture, sports and tourism, according to the Olympic Council of Asia website. 

“From what we learned from the chairman, based on what was discussed, the deadline for the entry by number will be in January while the next month or February will be the submission of accreditation forms and the deadline of entry by name in March,” Fernandez said.

He added that based on the slide presentation of the Vietnamese government official, the delegation registration meeting would be held a few days before the actual regional sports showcase.

POC president and Tagaytay Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino announced last week that Vietnam had reset the regional Games to May 2020 after taking part in the online meeting of the SEA Games Federation Council.

Games organizers requested in July to postpone of the biennial meet to next year following the rise of COVID-19 infections not only in their country but across the region, which the SEA Games members unanimously agreed to. 

The Vietnamese Olympic Committee posted on its website last Wednesday confirming that the “Office of the (Vietnamese) Party Central Committee has just issued a written notice of the Politburo's opinion agreeing to delay the organization of the 31st SEA Games to the second quarter of 2022.”

“The Politburo also assigned the Party Affairs Committee of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to coordinate with agencies in formulating a scheme on organizing the 31st SEA Games and submitting it to the Government for approval,” the report said

As the defending overall SEA Games champion, the Philippines is expected to send about 600 athletes in 39 of the 40 disciplines in the Vietnam Game, Tolentino announced earlier.

Filipino campaigners recaptured the overall championship with 149 gold, 117 silver and 121 bronze medals in the 30th edition held on home ground two years ago.

The POC chief declared he wanted no lower than third place in the meet that will be held in the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi and neighboring areas.

Fernandez said the Vietnam SEAG was something that national athletes could look forward to in early 2022 after the majority of them did not see action for more than a year since they last saw action in the 2019 SEA Games.

He said the PSC has already approved the bubble training of some national sports associations, with athletes in karate and boxing working out at the PSC training facility inside the Teacher’s Camp in Baguio City.

Fernandez said that the national track and field team has begun actual workouts at the Baguio Athletic Bowl near Burnham Park while rowing has resumed training at the La Mesa Dam reservoir in Quezon City.

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