Manila’s finest athletes feted
() - April 4, 2002 - 12:00am
Some of the finest athletes ever produced by the City of Manila will be honored on Sunday when the first Manila Youth Games (MYG) finally comes off the wraps amid a festive atmosphere at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.

The honorees are Filomeno "Boy" Codiñera of baseball, Akiko Thompson of swimming, Andres Franco of athletics, Adriano Torres, Jr. of badminton, Chito Garma of chess, Joaquin Loyzaga of football, Felicisimo Ampon of tennis and Ricardo Fortaleza of boxing.

On hand to grace the opener starting at 5 p.m. will be First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo, Manila Mayor Lito Atienza and Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman Eric Buhain. Arroyo and Buhain are the keynote speakers while Atienza will declare the Games open.

"There is no other way we in Manila could thank our very own sports heroes — who did not only make Manila proud but the entire country as well — but to recognize their efforts in a fitting ceremony where kids who could be like them would start polishing their spurs in the field of athletic competition," said Atienza.

Song and dance numbers from some 3,000 children athletes and performances from different bands will add spice to the three-hour opening ceremony of the weeklong event — a brainchild of the Manila Sports Council (Masco) under chairman Arnold "Ali" Atienza, son of the mayor.

"We expect to open the first MYG with a bang with this festive opening ceremony and with the intention that all weeklong competitions will be as exciting among the kids," said the young Atienza.

ADRIANO TORRES AKIKO THOMPSON ANDRES FRANCO ARROYO AND BUHAIN ATIENZA CHITO GARMA CITY OF MANILA ERIC BUHAIN FELICISIMO AMPON FIRST GENTLEMAN JOSE MIGUEL ARROYO
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