POC President says Tokyo 2020 success ‘changed landscape’ of sport in Philippines

POC President Rep. Abraham Tolentino. © Manila Standard
POC President Rep. Abraham Tolentino. © Manila Standard

Manila, Philippines, September 16, 2021: The two tiers of the Philippines government – the House and the Senate – have both vowed to guarantee funding for four major sports events in 2022, Philippine Olympic Committee President Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino revealed on Wednesday.

The POC President said the four games would be included in the 2022 General Appropriations Act to secure priority funding in the wake of the Philippines’ golden performance at the Tokyo Olympics.

The four events in question in 2022 are the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing in February, the 6th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Thailand in March, the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China in September and the 3rd Asian Youth Games in Shantou, China in December. 

The Philippines has three figure skaters trying to qualify for Beijing 2022 and follow in the footsteps of the country’s participation at Sochi 2014 and PyeongChang 2018.

The POC, Tolentino said, would immediately determine the size of the Philippines delegation for the four events in order to calculate the budget to be allocated by the 18th Congress.

“The budget hearings are coming up so we have to be steadfast,” Tolentino said. “Philippine sports must be unwavering as we have to sustain the momentum of our successful campaign in the Tokyo Olympics.”

Tolentino added that both chambers of Congress were very supportive of Philippine sports.

“We have our sports heroes in gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz, silver medalists Nesthy Petecio and Carlo Paalam and bronze medalist Eumir Felix Marcial and the 15 other athletes who fought mightily in Tokyo,” Tolentino said. 

“Their success and how they campaigned changed the landscape of Philippine sports.”