With best Olympics showing ever, Team PH upbeat about 2022 Asian Games
There’s a compelling argument to anticipate another boom for Team Philippines in the Asian Games next year.
Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham “Bambol’’ Tolentino believes the Philippine medal breakthrough in the ongoing Tokyo Olympics could trickle down to the Asian Games with the present crop of high-performing athletes that the country has.
But Tolentino also cautioned that success at the 2022 Asiad in Hangzhou, China, on Sept. 10-25 would hinge on the events and weight categories entered by the host nation.
“If our medalists [here in the Olympics] can compete in the Asian Games, we will really prepare for it,’’ said Tolentino. “We have several athletes who we can bank on in the Asian Games and in the Southeast Asian Games.’’Hidilyn Diaz seized the first Olympic gold medal for the Philippines after 97 years in the 55-kilogram category of women’s weightlifting, while boxer Nesthy Petecio claimed the silver medal in the women’s featherweight division, losing to a Japanese who could also be in the Asiad.
Boxers Carlo Paalam and Eumir Marcial are already assured of bronze medals while Yuka Saso and Bianca Pagdanganan started their campaigns in women’s golf.
“I’m positive that the Asian Games in China will push through. We just hope that the events and weight categories of our medalists will be included,’’ said Tolentino.
The Philippines will enjoy its best finish in the Olympics since the 1932 Los Angeles Games regardless of the medal outputs of Paalam and Marcial as well as the golfers. INQ