POC’s Tolentino says XXXII Olympics is the country’s best chance for medals
MANILA - Philippine Olympic Committee President Abraham “Bambol” N. Tolentino today said the coming XXXII Tokyo Olympics scheduled to begin from July 23 to August 8,2021 is the best chance for the Philippines to win the elusive gold medal for the country.
In an interview at the sidelines of the vaccination of athletes bound for the Olympics, Paralympics and Southeast Asian Games at the Prince Hotel Friday morning, Cavite’s 8th District Congressman and Deputy House Speaker Tolentino said 14 Filipino athletes have already qualified for the Olympics.
“This is our best chance that is why I am against any postponement of the games. Our best chances are in boxing, weightlifting and gymnastics and we may have our first Gold medal in a hundred years,” he said.
About 700 athletes, sports officials and other functionaries received their first jab of Sinovac vaccines this morning.
He said Vietnam has already announced no athlete will go to the Tokyo Olympics without having themselves inoculated.
Asked of his thoughts about the preparations for the XXXII Olympics, POC President Tolentino said he appreciates the national government’s approval of their proposal to prioritize athletes in the vaccination program.
After the first jab, a number of Tokyo-bound athletes will resume their training. Several other Filipino athletes who earlier qualified for the Olympics have remained abroad for their rigid training.
Meanwhile, 21-year-old Cris Nievarez, the sole Filipino rower to qualify for the Olympics has a five-hour training routing at La Mesa Dam.
“The vaccine I received will boost my confidence to undergo intensive training,” he said. He said he spends at least five hours per day training. Nievarez, a native of Barangay Caridad, Atimonan, Quezon, looks forward to a good performance at the Tokyo Olympics.
From international reports, medical professionals belonging to a doctors’ union warned holding the Olympic Games in Tokyo could lead to the development of a new “Olympic” strain of the coronavirus.
According to a report from the Japan Times, the report dated May 27,2021, revealed despite the Japanese government’s pledge to hold a “safe and secure” 2020 Olympics after its postponement for a year, it is struggling to contain a fourth wave as it prepares to extend a COVID-19 state of emergency that covers much of the country. (Melo M. Acuña)
Philippine Olympic Committee President Rep. Abraham "Bambol" N. Tolentino at the Manila Prince Hotel where hundreds of athletes bound for the Tokyo XXXII Olympics, Tokyo Paralympics and Southeast Asian Games received their first dose of Sinovac vaccines. (Melo M. Acuna)