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Countdown to 2019 SEA Games begins

Sports officials, athletes and delegates gathered at the Clark Freeport in Pampanga on Friday to begin the one-year countdown to the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, which will be hosted by the Philippines, a report aired at GMA’s “24 Oras” said.

The guests had a glimpse of the Athletic and Aquatic Center being constructed inside the former military facility, which would be the main venue of the 56 sports included in the regional games.

Some sports events will take place at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex, the report said.

It would be the fourth time the Philippines will play host to the SEA Games.

Ricky Vargas, president of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC), said the country will aim for at least a Top 3 finish.

“One of our goals is excellent performance, which means ang goal is to at least improve dramatically our performance in the last Southeast Asian Games, so what we’re looking at is to be able to improve it all the way to at least the top 3,” he said.
Weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz, who gave the country a silver medal in the 2016 Olympics, urged her fellow athletes to train hard to win.

“Sa mga atletang Pilipino, eto na, nandito na tayo, one year to go, mag-training na ang lahat  . . .gawin na natin ang lahat,” she said.

The controversial SEA Games logo was also unveiled, which earlier drew flak for purportedly lacking creativity.

Including the Philippines, the countries expected to participate in the games are  Brunei, Cambodia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. —LDF, GMA News