The Philippine Sports Commission is preparing a P50 million war chest for the training of Pinoy athletes to the 17th Asian Games in Incheon in September.
Chairman Richie Garcia of the PSC, also the chef-de-mission of the Philippine contingent to Incheon, made the announcement yesterday.
“The PSC is allotting P50 million, which all NSAs (national sports associations), whose athletes will be participating, can avail of,” said Garcia.
But he clarified that only NSAs who can justify the inclusion of their athletes to the Asian Games lineup are qualified.
Garcia said the P50 million would be used solely for the training of the athletes here and abroad.
It is meant to assure that the athletes will be provided with proper training.
“We are doing this to assure our countrymen that we are serious in preparing our athletes so that they can perform well with the end in view of improving our showing years ago in Guangzhou in China,” Garcia said.
In the 2010 Asian Games, the Philippines won three gold, four silver and nine bronze medals.
The P50 million, Garcia added, is separate from the P30 million the PSC has also allocated for the actual participation to the Asiad set Sept. 19 to Oct. 4.
The budget for the actual participation will cover transportation and lodging, parade and competition uniforms and allowances for the athletes and coaches.
Garcia and the members of the task force have started meeting with representatives of the different NSAs regarding their needs for the Asiad preparations.
The members of the task force include Philippine Olympic Committee chairman and triathlon chief Tom Carrasco, basketball official Dr. Jay Adalem and tennis official Romeo Magat.
During the Scoop Sa Kamayan On Air radio program aired over dzAR, Adalem explained the criteria to determine the Philippine lineup.
To be considered are gold medalists in last year’s Southeast Asian Games, the top performers in international and regional events, including world championships and Asian level meets the past three years as well as events scheduled before the Asiad.
But Adalem clarified that a gold medal in the last SEA Games is not a sure ticket to Incheon.
“In measurable sports, like track and field and swimming, an athlete must submit their personal best, which, in turn, will be compared to Asian Games and Asian level records,” said Adalem, who represents the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas in the task force.