'Tisoy' affects SEA Games

MANILA. Matches were not played as of 12 noon Tuesday at The Rizal Memorial Tennis Center due to the heavy rains brought about by Typhoon Tisoy that made landfall in the Philippines, leaving the courts wet and slippery. (Melchor Anzures)

MANILA -- Typhoon Tisoy, which made landfall over Marinduque at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, December 3, did not spare the ongoing 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, as some events and matches were either delayed or postponed due to heavy rains and strong winds.

In its 11 a.m. advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said frequent to continuous heavy to intense rains are expected over Romblon, Marinduque, Mindoro Province, Calabarzon, Metro Manila, Bataan, Pampanga, and Bulacan.

Tisoy was packing maximum winds of 150 kilometers per hour (km/h) near the center and gusts up to 250 km/h.

No tennis matches were played at the Rizal Memorial Tennis Center in Manila as of noon Tuesday, December 3, as the heavy rains left the courts wet and slippery, which could pose a danger to players. Metro Manila is placed under signal number 2.

Philippine women's Number 2 Shaira Hope Rivera was scheduled to play the women's doubles with top-ranked Marian Jade Capadocia at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

Rivera used to play for Sta. Ana National High School and played for Davao City and Davao Region, winning medals in past Palarong Pambansa editions.

"Hindi po matutuloy ang games kasi ulan po (The matches won't push through due to the rain)," the 20-year-old Ateneo de Manila University AB Literature English sophomore told SunStar Davao.

For his part, SEA Games tennis competition manager Chris Cuarto said in a phone interview that they are still observing the weather condition.

"We are still here. We have not advised any cancellation yet. We are still waiting it out. No matches have been played (so far)," Cuarto said, adding that the next advisory on whether the matches continue will be at 4 p.m.

Affected games

In its advisory, the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) said some changes were made in the schedules of the sports competitions due to Typhoon Tisoy.

"We respectfully report on some changes in the schedules of sports competitions of the 30th SEA Games due to the landfall of Typhoon Tisoy in the country," Phisgoc said.

Phisgoc announced suspended and cancelled sports as of 11 a.m. Tuesday.

In the Subic Cluster, beach volleyball games schedule was revised for Monday, December 2, and Tuesday. The canoe-kayak races were rescheduled from Tuesday and December 4, to December 6 to 8.

Muay Thai competition Tuesday will yet start on December 4 to 8, while sailing and windsurfing, which began Monday, will resume on December 5.

Modern pentathlon, which was set to start on December 4, was reset to December 5. Surfing will resume on December 4, while mixed relay triathlon was played on Monday instead of December 4.

In the Southern Luzon Cluster, underwater hockey will be finished before 3 p.m. Tuesday. However, skateboard was postponed while polo matches fo Tuesday were cancelled.

In Metro Manila, ESports training schedule for Tuesday was cancelled.

Sports that shall continue as of 10 a.m. Tuesday were the Southern Luzon Cluster (cycling, indoor hockey, and netball), Metro Manila Cluster (floorball, badminton, fencing, football, gymnastics, weightlifting, wushu, and volleyball), and Clark Cluster (rugby sevens, archery, arnis, athletics, wrestling, kurash, baseball, softball, lawnbals, dancesport, and water polo).

Safety first

Phisgoc said they are prepared to “take the necessary precautionary measures to secure the safety of all our guests and athletes.”

“Trust that we have storm-proofed the Games, with several alternate plans queued to ensure that this biennial meet doesn't go beyond its scheduled finish on December 11," it added.

The organizing body also said that they want the delegates to prioritize their security during their stay in the Philippines, wishing that they continue to enjoy the Games "with the authentic spirit of sportsmanship".

Phisgoc chief operating officer Ramon "Tats" Suzara, in a press conference on November 29, said competition managers are ready for the typhoon with expected delays and suspensions.

"We are ready for this. We will brace the storm. All competition managers have prepared a contingency plan. Everything is in place especially for the outdoor sports," Suzara said.


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