Cebuano SEA Games medalists to be honored in grand homecoming event
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebuano sports fans will get the chance to meet and greet their sports idols as the SM Seaside City Cebu will roll its red carpet for the grand homecoming of the Cebuano medalists in the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) on Saturday, June 11, at the mall’s city wing atrium.
In partnership with the Cebu City Sports Commission (CCSC), SM Seaside City will honor the 11 Cebuano athletes who shone in the recently concluded biennial games in Vietnam.
Seven of the 11 Cebuano medalists have confirmed to attend the homecoming event on Saturday according to Pages.
PBA basketball stars June Mar Fajardo of the San Miguel Beermen and Roger Pogoy of the TNT Tropang Giga, who settled for silver medal with the Gilas Pilipinas in SEA Games, will miss the homecoming.
This is because these two basketball stars are currently campaigning with their respective teams in the ongoing PBA season.
Also, double gold medalist in billiards, Rubilen Amit announced that she would miss the homecoming event as she was manning a billiards tournament in Manila. In addition, sepak takraw bronze medalist Rhey Jay Ortouste cannot also attend the event.
Nonetheless, Cebuano sports fans will still meet and greet seven SEA Games medalists in Alexis Sy-Chua (silver, bowling), Andrew Kim Remolino (silver, men’s triathlon), Raven Faith Alcoseba (bronze, women’s triathlon), Elreen Ando (silver, weightlifting), Wilbert Aunzo and Pearl Marie Caneda (silver, two bronzes dancesport), and Lois Kaye Go (bronze, golf).
In a zoom presser on Thursday, SM Seaside’s Anton del Prado, Anther Infante, CCSC Chairman John Pages, and events host Jiggy Pilosopo are all excited to welcome the Cebuano athletes who proudly carried Cebu’s banner in the SEA Games.
“We’re very glad for this homecoming event, it just started as a thought to recognize the Cebuano medalists in SEA Games. Now we’re very happy that John Pages came on board and made this event happen. We call it extraordinary because this is something really special, considering the SEA Games was delayed, but Cebuano athletes were able to bag these medals. This is very important for us at SM Seaside since it’s our way to support our sports community,” said Infante.
For his part, Del Prado who is the son of Philippine Taekwondo Association (PTA) Region 7 chairman Tony del Prado will treat the audience with an exhalirating taekwondo performance as the intermission number.
In addition, Aunzo and Caneda are expected to perform one of their routines in dancesport.
“We’re very excited for the activty on Saturday, thanks to SM Seaside for organizing this. Cebu is very proud to have several medalists that performed very well in the last SEA Games in Vietnam,” said Pages.
Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) Chairman William Ramirez and PSC commissioner and Team Philippines’ chef de mission during the SEA Games, Ramon Fernandez are going to give inspirational messages during the event.
Premier sports destination
During the presser, Infante and Del Prado said that SM Seaside City Cebu was not just one massive shopping mall. It’s also gearing itself as a premier host of major and local sports events in Cebu.
Since its opening in 2015, SM Seaside City Cebu has been one of the main sports venues in Cebu. It has hosted countless sports events from basketball, figure skating, weightlifting, martial arts, multi-sports meets and running events as its way to support the Cebuano sports community.
The 470,486-square meter mall has an Olympic-sized ice-skating rink, a 16-lane bowling center, an indoor and outdoor archery range, a chess club, and an obstacle course facility.
Soon, the much-awaited 16,000-seater Seaside Arena will rise adjacent to the mall, providing Cebuanos a world-class sports facility that can host international sports events.
Meanwhile, Pages is optimistic that SM Seaside City Cebu will further strengthen their partnership by opening its doors for Cebu City’s hosting of the Palarong Pambansa later this year, so as other CCSC-related sports events.
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