With POC’s and PSC’s strict guidelines in making it to the Philippine SEA Games team, Philippine swimming manage to qualify only five swimmers who will see action at the 27th Southeast Asian Games in Myanmar this December.
Spearheading the 5-member swimming team is Olympian and SEA Games veteran Jasmine Alkhaldi, the only female swimmer who made it to the elite SEA Games composition.
Twenty year old Alkhaldi has shown great improvement by clocking three new Philippine records this year.
She erased her previous records in the 100m Freestyle and 100m Butterfly events at the 15th FINA World Swimming Championship in Barcelona last August, with new record times of 56.37 in 100m Free and 1:01.71 in 100m Fly.
A month before the two new records were set, Alkhaldi also erased her 50m Freestyle record at the Speedo Western Region Swimming Championship in USA with a new record time of 26.30.
Joining Alkhaldi in Myanmar are Philippines’ new recruits, Joshua Hall and Matt Navatta, both fil-foreigners.
Joshua Hall is scheduled to figure out in the breaststroke events wherein he is the current Philippine record holder of the 100m Breaststroke, with a new record time of 1:02.87 registered at the 15th FINA World Swimming Championship in Barcelona.
Navatta on the other hand is another medal prospect in the 200m Breaststroke event, and is set to also see action at the Butterfly and Individual Medley events.
Completing the line-up are Olympian Jessie Khing Lcuna and SEA Games veteran Banjo Borja.
Lacuna will be competing at his 200m Freestyle pet event where he is the current record holder, and will also compete at the 100m Free and 100m Fly events where he currently holds the Philippine swimming ranking’s top spot.
Borja will figure out in the both breaststroke and individual medley events.
This year’s SEA Games is the third for Alkhaldi, Lacuna and Borja; while first time for Hall and Navatta.
Of the five swimmers, only Jessie Lacuna has so far won an individual medal in the previous SEA Games.