Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) Task Force has started screening athletes bound for the biennial meet to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia this August.
Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) chairman Tom Carrasco, head of the task force, said his group will also evaluate the budget requirements of the various National Sports Associations (NSA) and training equipments to be used by their athletes.
Aimed at improving the country's standing in the sports conclave and acknowledging the seriousness of the government through the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) to give full support to our athletes in all fronts that include training and international exposure, Carrasco emphasized that his group will strictly implement the criteria set by the task force.
The following criteria set for selection are: previous SEA Games performance, 2015 SEAG result, Competitiveness, active and deserving athletes.
According to the Malaysian Organizing Committee, among the 38 sports disciplines (405 events) up for grab for top honors include: athletics, aquatics, archery, badminton, basketball, billiard and snooker, boxing, cricket, cycling, equestrian, fencing, football, golf, gymnastic, hockey, ice hockey, ice skating, judo, karate, rugby football, sailing, sepak takraw, shooting, squash, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, tenpin bowling, triathlon, volleyball, weightlifting, lawn balls, water ski and wushu.
To promote the region's indigenous sports, Malaysia has revived the following games -- Muay Thai, Netball, Pencak Silat and Petaque.
Meanwhile, Olympic silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz will not be seeing action as Malaysia has scrapped the women's category in weightlifting.
In boxing, where Philippines is predicted to figure well, however, lightweight and welterweight events in men's boxing as well as three weight categories in women's boxing were scrapped, and also the individual time trial in the women's cycling.
In 2005, Philippines as a host, won the over-all championship, but in span of 11 years it has yet to duplicate the feat.
In the 2015 edition of this friendship games that begun 28 years ago, the country placed sixth.
Source: Philippines News Agency