PH badminton team set for final tune up ahead of SEA Games
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine national badminton team will get its final tune-up games heading into the 2019 Southeast Asian Gamers as it participates in the Smart National Open Badminton Tournament.
Not only will the tournament allow the nationals to test their mettle, the competition will also serve as a test event for the SEA Games with the badminton games taking place at Muntinlupa Sports Complex.
Philippine Badminton Association secretary-general Christopher Quimpo said the nationals will first hold training camps in Australia and Malaysia before flying back to the Philippines for the Opene from Nov. 17 to 22.
“We really want to get that elusive gold in the SEA Games and as a matter of fact they [the tea] are leaving for Malaysia this Sunday,” said Quimpo.
Headlining the Open are national team players Ros Pedrosa, Lanz Zafra, Arthur Salvado, and Solomon Padiz for men’s singles; the men’s doubles teams of Peter Magnaye and Alvin Morada, and Joper Escueta and Paul Pantig.
Sarah Barredo, Nicole Albo, Bianca Carlos, and Mika De Guzman spearhead the women’s singles while the pairings of Thea Pomar and Isay Leonardo, and Geva De Vera and Chanelle Lunod headline the women’s doubles.
National team head coach Bogs Amahit said getting to test out the venue weeks before the SEA Games will give them an advantage for the biennial meet which starts on the last day of November.
“This is a big help for the players in getting themselves familiarized with the venue before the SEA Games starts,” said Amahit in Filipino. “We’ll use our homecourt advantage for this one.”
Quimpo added that they’re not just hoping for a gold medal in the SEA Games but also taking a shot at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.
“For most of the year, you’ve probably been hearing maybe less than zero about Philippine badminton and it’s because we are deadest in winning gold medal in the SEA Games,” said Quimpo. “Maybe we can make it to the Olympics. We want our national athletes to excel not just here but also in the international scene.”
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