CAPAS, Tarlac -- Hundreds of student-athletes from Central Luzon's schools gathered in New Clark City for the opening ceremony of the State Colleges and Universities Athletic Association (SCUAA) III Olympics.
Participants from the 13 participating schools paraded at the Athletics' Stadium on Sunday, February 2, as the sporting event was opened by the local government of Capas and the host school, Tarlac State University.
The SCUAA III Olympics will run for six days, from February 3 to 8, with the athletics and swimming events to be held at the 20,000-seater Athletics Stadium and the 2,000-seater Aquatics Center.
New Clark City, a flagship project of the Duterte administration, was the main hub during the 30th Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) successfully hosted by the Philippines in the last quarter of 2019.
"Deka-dekada na ang lumipas na wala tayong world-class facilities para sa ating mga atleta. Ngayon na meron na, dapat lang magamit ito at pakinabangan ng ating mga kababayan lalo na ng mga kabataan at tingin ko lalong gaganahan ang ating mga atleta, lalo na ang mga future medalists natin," said BCDA President and CEO Vince Dizon.
"Nakikita niyo naman ang salita ni Pangulong Duterte ay hindi lamang naiiwanang salita. Itong mga sports facilities dito sa New Clark City ay patunay ng kanyang commitment na gawing priority ang sports development sa buong bansa," he added.
The 13 SUCs participating in the Olympics are the Tarlac State University, Aurora State College of Technology, Bataan Peninsula State University, Bulacan Agricultural State College, Bulacan State University, Central Luzon State University, Don Honorio Ventura State University, Nueva Ejica University of Science and Technology, Philippine Merchant Marine Academy, Pampanga State Agricultural University, Philippine State College of Aeronautics, President Ramon Magsaysay State University, and the Tarlac Agricultural University.
"Masayang-masaya kami na ginawang venue ito ng state universities and colleges kasi itong mga facilities na ito, kagaya ng sinasabi natin last year, hindi lang para sa SEA Games. Mas importante, ito ay para sa ating mga kabataan at future athletes," said Dizon.
The SCUAA III Olympics will have a total of 18 sporting events, including arnis, archery, athletics, badminton, basketball, baseball, beach volleyball, boxing, chess, football, futsal, karatedo, lawn tennis, sepak takraw, softball, swimming, table tennis and volleyball.
The winners of the SCUAA-Central Luzon will compete at the SCUAA national games set this March 2020. (PR)