Tacloban City bets may hog Batang Pinoy limelight
BACOLOD CITY—Watch out for the Tacloban City athletes who survived the wrath of Supertyphoon “Yolanda” last November.
Philippine Sports Commission chair Richie Garcia predicted Monday that the 31 athletes who were rescued from their quarters at the totally destroyed Leyte Sports Academy and trained very hard will be highly motivated to compete in the Philippine Sports Commission-Philippine Olympic Committee Batang Pinoy national finals starting here Tuesday
“They are coming on strong, they trained in Manila with some national athletes (at Rizal Memorial Sports Complex),” said Garcia, back in his hometown to preside over the opening ceremony of the event for 15-and-under, during a press conference at Grand Regal Hotel.
The athletes, some of them orphaned by the typhoon that hit the Visayas last Nov. 8, were rescued by the PSC after making distressed calls to Manila.
Several were injured when the facilities where they sought refuge collapsed.
Negros Occidental Vice Gov. Eugenio Lacson and Art Puentevella, who represented Bacolod Mayor Monico Puentevella, also attended the press conference.
Only the softball games are scheduled in the morning at Bacolod National High School with the opening ceremony scheduled at 5 p.m., at the downtown plaza.
Some 2,000 athletes—all medalists from the three regional qualifying legs—will see action in 21 sports to be played in venues scattered in this city which took over from original host Zamboanga City.
“This (competition) is in line with our sports tourism program,” said Lacson. “These athletes will be performing before the hometown crowd, so it is a big boost for the local bets.”
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