Philippine delegation to Olympics final list known July 9-A A +A
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
AT LEAST 18 Filipino athletes and coaches will be heading to London for the Olympics, the world’s biggest sporting event slated July 27 to August 12.
But before their departure, a sendoff at the posh Blue Leaf in Taguig City will be hosted by the athletes’ corporate sponsors on June 25 with no less than President Benigno Aquino III invited to personally give his moral support, said chief of mission Manny Lopez in a briefing Tuesday.
The Philippines will send yet another lean delegation for the Olympics but the official list will only be released by July 9.
Tasked to bring the Philippines’ first gold medal since its participation in 1924 are Daniel Caluag (cycling), Jessie King Lacuna and Jasmine Alkhaldi (swimming), Mark Anthony Barriga (boxing), Hidilyn Diaz (weightlifting), Tomohiko Hoshina (judo), Brian Rosario (shooting), Marestella Torres (long jump) and Rene Herrera (steeplechase).
Fifteen Filipinos competed in the 2008 edition in Beijing but to no avail. The last time the country entered the medal board was in 1996, when boxer Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco placed second.
Some P30 million has been allotted for the training and preparation of the nine athletes as Lopez said they requested the state-run Philippine Sports Commission to shoulder the allowances.
Meanwhile, Lopez asked the public to rally behind the players, hoping that they will end the country’s 12-year medal drought.
“They are all medal contenders. They can deliver the goods if needed,” he said. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)