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SEAG buildup, stint to cost PSC P50M

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippine Sports Commission will need at least P50 million to fund the training and participation of some 500 athletes in this year’s Southeast Asian Games in Palembang and Jakarta, Indonesia.

Based on their calculations, PSC chair Richie Garcia yesterday said they will have to spend P100,000 per athlete for the biennial, 11-nation event that will cover the ticket fares, medical needs, allowances, uniforms, equipment and event international exposures.

The event is slated Nov. 11-25.

“That’s basically our ‘guess-timate’ based on the same computations we have when we sent athletes in last year’s Guangzhou Asian Games,” said Garcia.

The Phl is eyeing to field in more or less 500 athletes in the SEA Games, which would cost the government’s sports-funding agency a minimum of P50M to bankroll the country’s SEAG participation.

That is not counting the 300 coaches, medical and training staff and some delegation members that will go to Indonesia.

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The problem, however, is that the PSC has allotted only P30-P40 million for the Palembang Games campaign.

“We’re looking for ways to minimize our expenses but if it couldn’t be avoided, we’ll find some other means to address the problem,” said Garcia.

The Phl is looking to participate in majority of the 44 sports and 542 events approved by the Palembang SEAG Organizing Committee, practically the same approved in the 2005 and 2007 editions in Manila and Thailand, respectively, but nearly doubled the events calendared last year in Laos.

The Filipinos are out to improve on their fifth place finish in the Laos SEAG where they went home with a 38-gold, 35-silver and 51-bronze medals, less than half of what eventual 1-2 finishers Thailand (86-83-97) and Vietnam (83-75-57) won.

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