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560-strong PH team for SEAG '21 says POC chief

The Philippines will bring in 560 athletes for this year's SEA Games in Hanoi. Jade Moya (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Although not as much as in 2019, the Philippines will bring in a huge contingent to Hanoi for the upcoming Southeast Asian Games.

Philippine Olympic Committee president Bambol Tolentino said on Thursday that 560 athletes playing in 520 events in 38 sports will participate in this year's edition of the biennial meet from Nov. 21-Dec. 2 as approved during the agency's board meeting at the East Ocean Restaurant in Paranaque.

The Cavite congressman added that the number was based on the Philippine team's performance when it hosted the SEA Games in Luzon two years ago, where the Nationals took home the overall title.

“The basis of selection primarily hinged on those athletes who won medals in the 2019 SEA Games that we hosted,” Tolentino said. “We also looked at events where the potential of winning the gold medal is very high, as justified by an athlete or athletes' performance in 2019.”

A group of 1,115 athletes netted 149 golds, 117 silvers, and 121 bronzes for the Philippines in 2019 en route to the general championship, the country's second overall.

However, Tolentino clarified that the 560 count is based on the "entries by numbers culled from discussions with the various national sports associations early this week," and it could possibly be trimmed based on the actual entries by names.

The Vietnam Olympic Committee has given the SEA Games teams up to March 21 to submit their entries by numbers.

The deadline for submission of the entries by names is set in August.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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