The Southeast Asian Games Federation has approved boxing’s re-inclusion in the SEAG calendar next year in Singapore, ensuring the Filipinos’ stake for gold medals in the country’s perennial goldmine in the biennial multi-sport event.
The SEAG organizing committee has previously approved an initial list of 30 sports disciplines, which excluded boxing. But in a meeting last week in Singapore, Philippine Olympic Committee chair Tom Carrasco confirmed boxing’s re-inclusion along with traditional boat race, equestrian, indoor volleyball, petanque and floorball.
“Total sports approved to date are now 36,” said Carrasco, who arrived yesterday from the SEAGF meeting in Singapore.
Of the 36, 24 are Olympic sports while 34 are part of the Asian Games calendar with the other two including netball as non-Olympic and Asiad events.
The Philippines won three gold, four silver and three bronze medals in the last SEA Games in Myanmar where the country posted its worst ever finish of seventh place.
“It’s a welcome news, very good news,” said Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines executive director Ed Picson, who is currently in Ho Chi Min in Vietnam.
Carrasco said the host country may accept one or two more events, which could be karatedo, weightlifting or kempo.
“There are requests among the members but the strongest candidates are karatedo, weightlifting and kempo in that order. I think, if Singapore will decide on it, they will choose only one,” he said.