Patafa scouting around for training facilities

Published July 1, 2020, 4:34 PM

by Kristel Satumbaga-Villar

Philip Ella Juico
Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association chief Philip Ella Juico (MB File Photo)

The Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association is looking for temporary training venues for their national athletes eager to get back in preparation for future tournaments including qualifiers to the Tokyo Olympics.

Patafa chief Philip Ella Juico said in a recent video conference they have already identified a few venues outside Metro Manila for approval as government training venues like the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex and Philsports Complex in Pasig City are being used as medical facilities to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

Some of the venues they are looking into are De La Salle Dasmariñas or Vermosa Sports Hub, both in Cavite, and a school in Biñan, Laguna.

They are also looking at other venues inside the National Capital Region.

Like other national sports associations, PATAFA is also requesting that the Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) will allow group training and competitions as soon as possible.

NCR, Rizal and Cavite remain on General Enhanced Quarantine until July 15.

Resumption of training is important for the athletes as they are still bidding to gain berths to the Olympics rescheduled next year.

The country is also allotted one slot, male or female, should there be no qualifiers under the universality rule.

Last month, Juico said Patafa plans to resume its grassroots and elite programs by August. Part of the proposed plan is to carry on with the weekly relays aimed at monitoring athletes’ performances, as well as holding the annual National Open in December.

Still, all these plans will depend on the recommendation and guidelines of the IATF assessing the country’s situation relating to the health crisis.