What to look forward to for Philippine sports in 2015 (Part 1)
Mark Escarlote on Dec 28, 2014 09:06 PM
Philippine sports will be busy with different and exciting events this 2015.
Philippine sports will once again be busy come 2015 with different competitions and events showcasing the best athletes in the country vying for recognition and honor.
Here are some of the events Pinoy sports fans should watch out for next year.
1. Southeast Asian Games
Redemption from the worst finish in the biennial multi-sport regional meet will be the main goal of Filipino athletes that will compete in the 28th Southeast Asian Games in Singapore.
Scheduled from June 5-16, all eyes will be set on our bets in different sports disciplines if they can help the Philippines recover from a dismal seventh place in 2013 at the Nay Pyi Taw Games in Myanmar.
It was the lowest finish for the Philippines in the SEA Games. After winning the overall title as hosts in 2005, the Filipinos have dropped to sixth, fifth, sixth and seventh in the succeeding years.
Philippine Sports Commission chairman Ricardo Garcia said that they expect to get a better result this time and even set a mark of fourth or third place overall.
“In this SEA Games we have to focus and really push for a better performance of at least number three or number four,” said Garcia.
2. Philippine Azkals
After a successful run in 2014 with new coach Thomas Dooley, the Philippine Azkals will again have a full schedule ahead of them starting with 2018 World Cup qualifiers.
The Filipino booters are scheduled to charge against a yet to be determined opponent for the first round of the World Cup qualifier on March 12 and 17 in a home-and-away format.
Provisional schedule of the draw is on February 10, 2015.
Three years ago, the Philippine Azkals made history by marching into the second round of the 2014 World Cup qualifiers but got their road to Rio cut short by a stronger Kuwaiti squad after bearing Sri Lanka in the opening round.
The Azkals are expected to try to take back the title it lost to Myanmar this year in the fourth edition of the Philippine Peace Cup sometime in September.
3. Le Tour De Filipinas
Only the ones having the strongest legs and stamina will stand in the podium when the only Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) recognized bikathlon in the country takes the road on February 1 to 4.
The Philippine contingent to the sixth edition of Le Tour is eyeing no less than a back-to-back title romp led by defending champion Mark Galedo.
There will be two Pinoy squads, one being the national team that will use the race as part of their training for the Asian Road and Track Championships in late February and the SEA Games, and the 7-11 team going against 13 continental entries from Australia, US, Kazakshtan, Brunei, Indonesia, Uzbekistan, Iran, Malaysia, Japan, and Taiwan in the four-stage event.
The first stage of the meet will be from Balanga,Bataan to Balanga (126 kms), followed by Balanga to Iba Zambales (153.75 kms), and then Iba to Lingayen, Pangasinan (149.34 kms), and finally Lingayen to Baguio City (101 kms).
4. Philippine Superliga and Shakey’s V-League
A new and exciting year of volleyball action will once again give fans something to look forward to.
The Philippine Superliga will hold its second Rookie Draft on February 28 before the All-Filipino Conference starts on March 8. Top international imports will return in the PSL Grand Prix.
PSL will also introduce its inaugural beach volleyball tournament and a short Champions League that will pit top teams from the PSL, Shakey’s V-League, NCAA and UAAP as well as two foreign squads.
Shakey’s V-League, the country’s first amateur volleyball tournament, will also have its 12th season with a promise of more action-packed conferences throughout the year.
5. Palarong Pambansa
Want to know and take a glimpse of future collegiate stars?
Universities and college varsity scouts are expected to flock this summer’s edition of Palaraong Pambansa in Tagum, Davao Del Norte to get new recruits.
The national sports meet for elementary and secondary students, set on May, will showcase the skills of potential star athletes or talents for the national pool from different disciplines representing the 17 regions.
Will the mighty National Capital Region remain on top or will other regions like perennial contender Western Visayas finally topple the Big City bets’ dynasty?
(to be continued)
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