by Nick Giongco
To ensure that the national athletes remain in peak form in the runup to the 29th Southeast Asian Games, the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) is meeting today with the SEAG Task Force and the medical and strength teams, POC president Jose ‘Peping’ Cojuangco said yesterday.
“It is paramount that they don’t suffer from burnout,” said Cojuangco, who fears that members of the 500-strong Team Philippines might either overtrain or lose their sharpness in the final three weeks leading up to the formal Aug. 19 opening.
“I am meeting (SEAG TF head) Tom Carrasco and the strength and conditioning and medical teams to guarantee that our athletes would remain in good condition while they are awaiting for their turn to fly to Kuala Lumpur,” said Cojuangco.
Even though the KL SEAG won’t officially kick off until Aug. 19, there would already be competitions and finals matches in football, archery and sepak takraw a week before.
The Philippines is sending 498 athletes to Malaysia and they will be joined by about 250 officials armed with the mission of improving on its sixth-place, 29-gold medal production two years ago in Singapore.
Cojuangco politely declined to make a medal projection although he is upbeat that this year’s batch seems to be more confident and well-conditioned compared to the previous one.
“We’ll do better this time,” said the 82-year-old former Tarlac congressman.
But the coming days and weeks “must be closely monitored” by the SEAG TF.
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