THE 3rd Mindanao Peace Games (MPG) slated on October 23 to 29 is deemed to be the next big thing to enliven Mindanao sports.
This, as MPG convenor Emmanuel Rene Ayo found the event to be hosted this year by Ateneo de Davao University in Davao City as "very promising" one.
In same manner, Ayo acknowledged the games as semblance to the now extinct Mindanao Friendship Games, a brainchild of Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman William "Butch" Ramirez.
Ayo, however, clarified that the three-year-old sporting meet is very clear in its objectives simplified by the three "Ks" slogan meant for: Kasama, Kaibigan, Kalaro.
“It’s not just for the games as we’re also getting network of friends,” said Ayo during the opening of the Coaches Forum held at the Xavier University gym here last Saturday.
Ayo also compared the MPGames to the annually-held University Games oftentimes held in La Salle Bacolod as it started with just eleven all-female contingents.
Ayo did not discount the possibility of expanding the MPG with the inclusion of male athletes.
“All big things start in small beginnings, though we know that resources are vital in achieving our goal,” Ayo said.
The MPG has the commitments from the premier universities in Mindanao such as the Ateneo de Davao and XU-Ateneo de Cagayan.
Other participants include the Ateneo de Zamboanga University, Holy Cross of Davao College, University of Southeastern Philippines, San Pedro College of Davao, Datu Ibrahim Paglas Memorial College, Holy Trinity College, Father Saturnino Urios University, Saint Joseph Institute of Technology, La Salle University Ozamiz and Mindanao State University-Marawi.
The six-day games will have eight sporting events such as basketball, volleyball, football, badminton, chess, table tennis, swimming and track and field.
Published in the SunStar Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 12, 2017.