September 25, 2017, 1:38 am
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PSC starts gearing athletes up for Tokyo Olympics

THE Philippine Sports Committee has started screening athletes in the national pool who will be given all-out support in training and international exposure to boost their chances of qualifying and battling for medals in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

As a member of the priority athlete program, the athletes will be given a program of events to compete in as well as international exposure to follow in their respective bids to make the grade in the Tokyo Olympics.

They will also be provided nutritionists and sports psychologists to help as part of their Olympic roadmap to Tokyo. Their performances will be periodically monitored to merit their retention in the program. 

Already in the list of the PSC priority athletes is Rio Olympic silver medalist and weightlifter Hidylin Diaz, who will be back in action in the 4th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games and left with the national squad yesterday for Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.

Another Olympic prospect is three-time SEA Games gold medalist Kiyomi Watanabe, who retained her women’s 63-kilogram division crown in judo in the Malaysia SEA Games last month.

Also being considered are three other Filipino-Japanese judokas – Mariya Takashi, who made a SEA Games golden debut in ruling the women’s 70-kg class, and Malaysia SEA Games bronze medalists Keisei and Shugen Nakano.

Athletics has five candidates in Fil-Ams Eric Shawn Cray and SEA Games double gold medalist Trenten Beram, SEA Games women’s marathon queen Mary Joy Tabal, SEA Games decathlon king Aries Toledo and young pole vaulter Ernest John Obiena.

Taekwondo will have four aspirants in kyorugi (sparring) in Rio Olympian Kirstie Elaine Ellora, Pauline Louise Lopez, Malaysia SEAG gold medalist Samuel Morrison and Mary Angeline Alcantara.
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