by Nick Giongco
Candidates for inclusion to the 16-member national pool for kickboxing will be assembled in July when the Samahang Kickboxing ng Pilipinas (SKP) holds its selection in line with the 2019 Southeast Asian Games (SEAG).
Regional tournaments will take place in the coming weeks, according to SKP chief Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino, also the Philippine Olympic Committee chairman.
The national event will be staged in Tagaytay City and Tolentino hopes to come up with a solid squad for the Nov. 30-Dec. 11 SEAG.
Kickboxing has found a home for the SEAG competitions and the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City will be the epicenter of action.
Once the national team is formed, the SKP will work on sending it to a tournament overseas plus a two-week training camp.
A test event is also in the pipeline for the SEAG-bound team that will vie for a total of eight gold medals, six in men and two in women’s.
This will mark the first time that kickboxing will be played in the SEAG and the host is aiming to make heads turn by sweeping all the events.
Still, the SKP is determined to do just that by not taking potential rivals for granted, listing Thailand and Vietnam as major threats.