Philippines athletics team are all fired up for a good start today, as athletics events kick off at the 27th Southeast Asian Games in Wunna Theikdi Stadium, Naypyitaw, Myanmar.
Spearheading the first day of athletics action are middle distance runner Archand Christian Bagsit, long jumper Henry Dagmil and hammer thrower Arniel Ferrera, all gunning to convert their 2011 SEA Games silver medals to gold.
Bagsit, the first to see action in the morning heats today, came so close in winning the gold in his SEA Games debut two years ago in Palembang, Indonesia, barely losing the 400m run gold to Indonesia’s Heru Astriyanto.
“He has improved a lot since Indonesia,” said Phl athletics team leader Luisito Arciaga on the eve of the sport’s kickoff. “This time, he’s one of our strongest bets for the gold.”
Bagsit, then only 20, lost the 400m gold to Astriyanto with a clocking of 47.71s to the Indonesian’s 47.53 in Palembang. He now clocks a season’s best of 47.11 en route to his golden campaign this year.
Joining Bagsit in the 400m heats this morning is Edgardo Alejan who is the fastest Filipino runner at present in the 400m dash with season’s best of 46.95.
Dagmil and Ferrera start their campaign this afternoon, with Dagmil taking the first jump in the order of events which starts at 14:00pm. He’ll be joined by Benigno Marayag who has been jumping better distance than Damil this year.
Also seeing action today are Riezel Buenaventura in the women’s pole vault and Narcisa Atienza in heptathlon.
Philippine athletics which only won two gold medals last 2011 SEA Games in Indonesia, hope to deliver 6 gold medals this year, and they hope to win two of those 6 today to fire-up the team.
Athletics has the most number of athletes this year in Myanmar SEA Games. A total of 24 athletes are seeing action in various events.
Not seeing action today are hurdler Eric Shauwn Cray, 1,500m and 3,000m steeplechaser Jessica Barnard, high jumper Tyler Ruiz, Eliezer Sunang, Rene Herrera, Ernest John Obiena, Loralie Sermona, Katherine Khay Santos, Julius Felicisimo Nierras, Mervin Guarte, Danilo Fresnido, Jesson Ramil Cid, Junrey Bano, Eric Panique, Christopher Ulboc Jr., Isidro del Prado Jr., Tyler Ruiz, and Rosie Villarito