More games, more progress

ASIDE from the Children’s Games, the Philippine Sports Commission has its calendar full for the next three years with the staging of the Visayas Games that will officially start in February next year.

Fourteen Olympic events and one indigenous Filipino Martial Arts have been picked to be competed by 12 to 22 year-old athletes from the Visayas.

“We at the PSC believe that the more the competition, the more chances of our athletes to sharpen their skills. We have identified 14 sports plus Arnis of course, because that is our national sport. There are three categories, the 12-Under category, the 17-Under and the 22-Under categories. Basically, we covered the school age, elementary level for the 12-Under, high school for the 17-Under and college for the 22-under,” PSC commissioner Ramon Fernandez explained to SunStar Cebu.

PSC and Philippine Sports Institute (PSI) Coordinators for the Visayas poured their heads together to come up a consensual agreement on which sports to be played.

“It was tedious work. But it would be worth it. We came up with the 15 priority sports which was the consensus among the sports coordinators and our resource people,” chief planner and event’s overall coordinator Nonnie Lopez.

Lopez added that the group decided on marathon, air rifle, archery, weightlifting, open water swimming, fencing, lawn tennis, arnis, boxing, judo, taekwondo, badminton, karatedo, triathlon and table tennis.

There will be quarterly eliminations with the top three finishers advancing to the national finals in November.

“This program will run up to 2020. The winners will receive cash incentives and a chance to compete for the Philippines in international tournaments. This is also our way to help NSAs identify potentials elite athletes,” explained Fernandez.

The Visayas Games will have its event on Feb. 18, which is the PSC Fun Run in Cebu City.

The event is held in cooperation with the Sinulog Foundation and is free of registration with singlet for 900 athletes (300 each in 12U, 16U and 22U). However, 23 years old and above athletes are welcome to join but they need to pay a registration fee of P500.

The event is 10K for 22U runners, 10K/5K for 16U and 5K for 12U. The top three will receive cash prizes as well as the 23years old and above participants.

In addition to the cash prizes, 60 runners (five each for the male and female division per two years bracket) will get free training module from John Philip Dueñas that they could use to help improve their skills.

Badminton, table tennis, boxing, arnis, and taekwondo will be played in March also in Cebu City.

Other places scheduled to host events for 2018 include Naga City, Tagbilaran City, Iloilo City, Danao City, Kalibo and Ormoc. All events are played on weekends only.


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