20-year-old prospects knock on SEAG door

Right after claiming gold medals in the recent national open championships, two newbies are chasing a much higher goal in the next few months: Inclusion in the Philippine team to the Hanoi Southeast Asian Games (SEAG).

National team coach Sean Guevara said 20-year-olds Alexie Caimoso and Leonard Grospe are within reach of making Team Philippines to the postponed biennial meet that will be held in Vietnam in May next year.

Caimoso drew attention after ruling the women’s heptathlon, besting several veterans including reigning SEA Games champ Sarah Dequinan, who quit in the last event due to injury.

In the final event, the 800-meter run, Caimoso bared that she was very nervous with the prospects of winning the gold medal.

“We (with Guevara) were trying to hit the SEA Games bronze standard (4,730 points) and I was trying to do my best,” Caimoso told Sports Radio. Dequinan, who won in 2019 with 5,101 points, was forced to withdraw after hurting her ankle.

Caimoso, who is third year marketing student at National University, finished with 4,734 points that practically qualified her for the SEA Games next year.

Grospe dominated the men’s high jump with 2.06 meters.

“He’s got a lot of promise and he’s already 6-foot-1,” said Guevara. The 2019 SEA Games gold was won by a Malaysian with a 2.21-m effort.