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PSC, POC agree to push for resumption of Olympic hopefuls' training

Only the Gilas Pilipinas 3x3 team has been cleared to resume their training for their OQT. Chooks-To-Go (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--The PSC and POC will jointly bat for the resumption of the training of athletes still vying for spots in the Tokyo Olympics.

In a virtual meeting on Tuesday, the PSC board led by OIC Mon Fernandez, POC president Bambol Tolentino, and POC secretary general Ed Gastanes agreed on pushing for the national athletes to return to their gear-up for the Olympic qualifiers they are in.

“We initiated the meeting with POC with the good of our national athletes in mind. Lagi yan priority as Chairman Butch Ramirez always say,” Fernandez in a statement on Wednesday.

Both parties will endorse the training protocols to the IATF, who will ultimately decide on whether the national athletes will be cleared to train again during the COVID-19 pandemic or not.

"We can only recommend, but they have the final say," Fernandez continued.

Once cleared, the taekwondo and boxing halls at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex here and the fencing and dormitory training halls, the multi-purpose center, and the strength and conditioning building of the PhilSports Complex in Pasig will be used for the national team's practice.

According to PSC national training director Marc Velasco, the said venues will undergo "massive disinfection... to ensure the safety of our athletes should they restart training" especially that the said practice facilities are close to recovery venues for COVID-19 patients.

Fernandez added that the PSC is open to hear pitches from practice facilities within low risk areas that will adopt the national athletes in training.

Only one group of athletes looking to crack next year's Olympics, the Gilas Pilipinas 3x3 team, was cleared to resume practice as part of the resumption of practices within professional teams.

[Related Story: Basketball, football practices now allowed despite COVID-19 pandemic]

The Chooks-To-Go Pilipinas 3x3-backed squad is now awaiting the go signal from SBP, which is still seeking clarification regarding the approved protocols, for it to return to practice.

[Related Story: SBP still waiting for details on practice protocols before resuming Gilas 3x3 training]

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno