POC nixes PH nat’l boxing team US training
THE PHILIPPINE Olympic Committee shot down the plans of the national boxing team to train in the United States because of concerns over scheduling and visa processing.
PSC Chair Richie Garcia yesterday said POC president Jose “Peping” Cojuangco Jr., called him up to say he won’t endorse the trip of 14 boxers and five coaches to the planned training in California starting Feb. 22.
Garcia said the PSC cannot fund the training expenses because of the POC decision. The request for financial assistance amounted to P3 million.
“We don’t hold back in supporting the national boxers, in fact they are always the top hopefuls for the Olympics,” said Garcia. “But we felt the trip to the US is too close to the Olympic Qualifying in China.”
The team is supposed to come back from the US on March 18, according to Garcia and then would go to Qia’Nan, China, for the Asia/Oceania regional Qualifying which begins March 23.
“That would be too taxing for the boxers who would have been training, sparring in the US and then they have to travel back home only to fly back to China,” Garcia said. “It makes sense to just go to China.”
He added that Olympic Qualifying-bound boxers from Australia and Papua New Guinea are now training in Baguio City to slowly acclimatize before going to China.
Garcia added that most of the boxers have yet to schedule appointments for US visas.
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