Malaysia plans to scratch events where Pinoy have medal potential in 2017 SEA Games

ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 01, 2016 04:31 PM
Malaysia plans to  scratch events in 2017 SEA Games
Philippine Olympic Committee sports and rules committee member Julian Camacho talks about the plan of 2017 Southeast Asian Games host Malaysia to scratch some sports events in the biennial meet.

Organizers of the 2017 Southeast Asian Games in Malaysia plan to cut some events in the biennial meet including those where Filipino athletes have the potential to win.

Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) sports and rules committee member Julian Camacho said that organizers have lined up 34 sports offering 342 gold medals in the meet scheduled Aug. 17 to 31 next year.

Camacho was in Kuala Lumpur last week for a meeting among members of the SEA Games Federation and learned that Malaysia is moving to scratch events in wushu and in centerpiece athletics as well as women's boxiing and women's weightlifting.

Camacho said the Wushu Federation of the Philippines will strongly suggest the inclusion of sanda (combat) events in the next SEA Games after Malaysia focused on the taolu (form) events, where the hosts have better chances of winning.

“Malaysia wants 17 events in taolu and none in sanda where our Filipino athletes are good. Malaysia is not good in these combat events,” said Camacho on Tuesday in the session of the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum at Shakey’s Malate.

Camacho said while they will push for the inclusion of other sports and events to help the Philippine cause, he will fight for the combat events in wushu to be played in Malaysia.

“Our athletes have been training all these years only to learn that there will be no sanda events in the next SEA Games. We’re not asking for the inclusion of all sanda events but let’s be fair so all the athletes can participate,” he said.

The longtime official of Philippine wushu said they’re toying with the idea of not sending any wushu athlete to the next SEA Games if their appeal is totally dismissed.

“We’d rather join the Southeast Asian Wushu Championships instead than the SEA Games,” said Camacho.

Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (Patafa) president Philip Juico is also up in arms following the plan of the Malaysian organizers to scratch eight track events from next year’s calendar.

“Let’s be fair to all,” Camacho said, referring to next year’s SEAG hosts.

Included in the calendar of events so far are athletics, aquatics (swimming, diving, synchronized swimming, water polo and open water swimming), archery, badminton, basketball, men’s boxing, bowling, cricket, cycling, equestrian, football, futsal, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, ice skating (figure and speed), karate, lawn ball, pencak silat, petanque, rugby 7, sailing, sepak takraw, shooting, snooker and billiards, squash, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, indoor volleyball, water-skiing, men’s weightlifting, and wushu.

Camacho said there are countries, including the Philippines, lobbying for the inclusion of other sports like baseball, judo, triathlon, and wrestling, and additional events in the sports already in the list.

The POC has asked the different national sports associations to formalize their request for inclusion if they’re not yet in the list or their requests for additional events.

“We’re giving them until March 9. We also asked them to write their own IFs (international federation) if they want to make an appeal. We will gather all the requests before we submit them to the SEA Games organizers,” he said in the session presented by San Miguel Corp., Accel, Shakey’s, and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp.

The next SEAG Federation meeting is scheduled July 13 and 14, and then another one will be held in August or exactly one year before the Games.

The Philippines finished sixth overall in the 2015 SEA Games in Singapore, behind Thailand (95-83-69), Singapore (84-73-102), Vietnam (73-53-60), Malaysia (62-58-66) and Indonesia (47-61-74). The Philippines had a medal haul of 29-36-66, ahead of Myanmar (12-26-31).

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