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Fernandez says PH goal of 3rd place finish in 31st SEAG achievable

By: Glendale G. Rosal - CDN Digital Correspondent | May 17,2022 - 03:30 PM

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) commissioner and Team Philippines chef de mission Ramon “El Presidente” Fernandez is optimistic that the Philippines could finish third overall in the ongoing 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) in Vietnam.

Five days into the regional sports meet, the country is currently in the third spot in the medal standings with 30 gold medals, 34 silvers, and 44 bronzes while Thailand is at second with a 36-38-52 harvest.

Host Vietnam is way on top of the heap with an 86-53-55 tally.

“We are halfway through the Games, and we are in the top three of the medal standings, thank God. We are well within our target of finishing at least third overall. We just have to maintain our performance until the end,” Fernandez said on Tuesday.

Despite limited resources and training that was hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic back home, the Filipinos are putting up a gallant stand, delivering their biggest haul thus far the other day of 10 gold medals.

Dancesport and gymnastics accounted for more than half of the country’s current haul with four and three golds, respectively.

The dancesport pair of Jean Mischa Aranar and Ana Nualla dominated three events: tango, Viennese waltz, and all final dance standards at the Long Bien Gymnasium to lead the team’s charge.

World gymnastics champion, Carlos Yulo, emerged as the most bemedalled Filipino athlete so far after winning five gold medals and a silver in his two-day campaign.

Also winning golds were swimmer Chloe Isleta and bowler Merwin Tan in the women’s 200-meter backstroke and men’s singles in bowling, respectively.

“We still have several sports where our athletes can win medals, and hopefully they can deliver,” said Fernandez.

Still in the medal hunt were the PH standard-bearers in athletics, archery, boxing, basketball, bowling, billiards, weightlifting with Tokyo Olympics gold medalist Hidylin Diaz, karatedo, taekwondo, wrestling, canoe-kayak, shooting, sepak takraw, muay thai and lawn tennis, according to the Team Philippines point man.


Fernandez is also monitoring closely the performances of the Filipino athletes vying in the SEA Games as this will ultimately decide what sports merits the PSC’s continued support in the future.

“We are closely evaluating the performance of our national athletes in the Vietnam SEA Games to determine what sports will continue to deserve our continued support,” said Fernandez.

“Since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, the government sports agency has been coping with scarce resources, so it is only fitting that they are used wisely for the National Sports Associations and their respective athletes.”

The PSC is largely dependent on the monthly financial support from the Philippine Amusements and Gaming Corp, which have been fluctuating since the pandemic struck in mid-March 2020.

“We are still under the pandemic so PAGCOR remittances to the PSC have not reached the previous peak levels we used to have before this virus crisis,” Fernandez said.

“However, PSC chairman Butch Ramirez and the rest of the PSC board have made it a point that the needs of the NSAs and their athletes are met, including international exposure, under the circumstances.”

With that in mind, it’s important, according to Fernandez to evaluate the performances of the athletes so that the PSC board can provide the budget accordingly based on their assessment.

The budget covers airfare, uniforms, equipment, hotel, and billeting plus allowances for the national team, among others.   /rcg


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PSC helps Cebu with Gymnastics Academy 

Diaz gets P5M more from PSC

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TAGS: 31st SEAG, Carlos Yulo, Cebu Daily News, EJ Obiena, Fernandez, Hanoi, Hidilyn Diaz, Mon Fernandez, Philippine Sports Commission, PSC, SEAG, Sports news, Vietnam

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