2 pares sa badminton, isasabak sa SEAG

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Ipadadala ng Philippine Bad-minton Association (PBA) ang dalawang nangungunang pares sa men’s doubles event na sina Paul Jefferson Vivas at Peter Gabriel Magnaye at sina Philip Joper Escueta at Ronel Estanislao para lumahok sa 28th Southeast Asian Games sa Singapore sa Hunyo 5 hanggang 16.

Sinabi ni PBA national head coach Paulus Firman na binigyan ng SEA Games Task Force ng Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) at Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) ang badminton ng kabuuang 10 silya para sa ilalahok na men’s at women’s event.

Gayunman, nagdesisyon si Firman, matapos ang huling pulong kay 2015 SEA Games Chief of Mission Julian Camacho, na magpapadala lamang ang PBA ng apat na kalahok sa pagsusumite nila ng mga pangalan sa men’s doubles na malaki ang tsansang makapag-uwi ng tansong medalya.

“SEA Games badminton competition level is definitely high. It’s too much for us since it’s still a long, long process before we can compete there. Then, we were given four slots. I just wanted to be realistic that’s why I only send players who have a chance to win at least a bronze,” sinabi ni Firman.

“But it also depends on the draw that’s why I can’t give any assurance,” pahayag pa nito. “We badly need more international exposures to improve the level of play. Our purpose in SEA Games is to give our doubles players the international exposure they need.”

Ipinaliwanag ni Firman na ang powerhouse team na Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, host Singapore at Vietnam, ang inaasahang dodomina sa badminton.

“I’m not counting out the talents of our players though. If they settle for at least a bronze medal, it is a bonus for us.”

Matatandaan na nagawa nina Vivas at Magnaye na kubrahin ang Swiss Open men’s doubles title noong Oktubre 2014 sa Switzerland upang iangat ang kanilang ranking sa Badminton World Federation men’s doubles category.

Samantala, nakamit naman nina Aries delos Santos at Alvin Morada na pumangalawa sa nagtatanggol na kampeon na sina An Khang ng Malaysia at Hong Kheng Yew sa men’s doubles sa ginanap na Iran Fajr International Challenge 2015.

Ang tambalan nina Magnaye at Vivas at maging sina Carlos Cayanan at Paul John Pantig ay tumapos sa ikatlo at ikaapat na puwesto, ayon sa pagkakasunod.