3 local gov’ts come to nat’l athletes’ rescue
The call for local governments to adopt athletes set to participate in the 31st Southeast Asian Games in Vietnam has picked up steam.
Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Abraham “Bambol’’ Tolentino on Tuesday announced that the cities of Sta. Rosa in Laguna, Taguig and Tagaytay have committed to host the bubble training of several sports beginning on the first week of July.
According to the POC chief, Taguig City Mayor Lino Cayetano chose to become the godfather of volleyball and table tennis, Tagaytay Mayor Agnes Tolentino will be the benefactor of kickboxing and cycling while Sta. Rosa Mayor Arlene Arcillas Nazareno has agreed to foster 50 athletes under their care.
“Besides their passion for sports, they want to be of service to the country by supporting our national athletes,’’ said Tolentino during the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum.
“It’s not easy because the expenses can run up to millions of pesos, but they agreed to shoulder the expenses for the food, accommodation and training facilities of our athletes,’’ added Tolentino.
He said these local governments will house national athletes until they leave for Hanoi, Vietnam, prior to the 11-nation sportsfest on Nov. 21 to Dec. 2. Sta. Rosa will most likely accommodate indoor games or combat sports such as wrestling, judo and kurash, among others.
Sports officials have sought the help of the local governments after the national government decided to keep the Philippine Sports Commission-controlled facilities inside the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Manila and PhilSports Complex in Pasig City as quarantine areas due to the rising cases of COVID-19.
“I’m still talking to some of our [local government] friends with one of them willing to accommodate up to a hundred athletes,” said Tolentino. INQ
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