The lean but mean Philippine swimming team kicks off their 27th Southeast Asian Games campaign tomorrow at the Wunna Theikdi Swimming Pool in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar.
Olympian Jasmine Alkhaldi takes the first plunge early in the morning at the 100m Freestyle women’s morning heats.
Alkhaldi, the only female swimmer in the team, is swimming in lane 4, heat 1, with a seed time of 56.37, the new Philippine national record in women’s 100m Freestyle where she registered last August at the 15th FINA World Championship in Barcelona Spain.
Fil-foreign new recruit Matt Louis Navata is also seeing action tomorrow in the men’s 400m individual medley event, swimming in lane 5 of heat 2 with a seed time of 4:28.15.
Both swimmers will be back in the evening finals if they register a top 8 time in the morning heats.
Olympian Jessie Khing Lacuna and national record holder Joshua Hall complete the four member swimming team.
Both swimmers are set to see action on Friday in the men’s 100m freestyle and men’s 100m breaststroke events, respectively, along with Navata in the men’s 200m individual medley event.
Although all four swimmers are not among the favorites to win the gold medal in their respective events, national swim coach, Pinky Brosas, believes that all four are capable of pulling off a surprise.
In the 2011 SEA Games in Indonesia, Philippine swimming team failed to win a single gold medal, but salvaged two silvers courtesy of Jessie Khing Lacuna in the 200m Freestyle event and Dorothy Grace Hong in the 200m Backstroke event.
Only Lacuna is part of the swim team this year since Hong has temporarily retired.
The lean team is looking to recover this year after a tough campaign in the previous SEA Games.