THE final list of Asian Games-bound athletes will be revealed in September after the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) extends the deadline for those who want to appeal for inclusion.

In an interview with Sun.Star, the Asian Games screening committee headed by chief of mission Joey Romasanta said a total of 126 athletes were partially approved by the POC executive board last Wednesday to compete in the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou, China.

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"We have a set a September 15 deadline for the national sports associations for the possible drafting of other athletes. They have to justify it and the final composition will depend on the final evaluation of the board," he said.

The POC earlier set August 15 as deadline for the NSAs to submit their respective bets with Romasanta looking at between 200 to 220 athletes, slightly lower than the 233-man delegation sent to the 15th Asiad held in Doha, Qatar four years ago.

Romasanta said the 126 athletes who will compete in 26 disciplines come from women's softball, men's and women's basketball teams and representatives from billiards and snooker, boxing, bowling, chess, and wrestling.

"These are gold medals winners in the 2009 Southeast Asian Games, the 2006 Doha Asian Games and those who won in topnotch international competitions."

The endorsement for the women's basketball team, however, may be withdrawn if they deliver a sub-par performance in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association Women's Championship to be held in Manila this October.

The General Appropriations Act has allotted P30 million for the country's participation in the Asian Games slated November 12-27.

In the 2006 edition, the Philippines won four gold medals, two in boxing and one each in billiards and wushu. The athletes also bagged four silver and bronze medals each. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)