March 17, 2023
MANILA – There will be 905 athletes that will be joined by 257 officials for Team Philippines that will campaign in the 32nd Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Cambodia in May, a final number announced by Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Bambol Tolentino after the general assembly (GA) on Wednesday.
That means that Filipino athletes will be fighting it out for honors in all of the 608 events in 38 sports that Cambodia has lined up, even though a unique set of rules, particularly in combat sports, flat out favor the host country.
“I’m confident these are all fighting athletes,” Tolentino said. “They will be competing in all the events despite the odds.”
Save for the hosts in the May 5 to May 17 event, the other countries are barred from fielding full teams in combat sports.
This batch of Nationals will easily exceed the 656 athletes that the country sent to compete in 38 sports in the Vietnam Games last year where the Philippines finished fourth overall with 52 golds, 70 silvers and 104 bronze medals.
Meanwhile, also in the same GA, the POC approved the suspension of the Philippine Swimming Inc. as a regular member and encountered no objection from the body.