The Amateur Softball Association of the Philippines wants to waste no time in preparing the women’s softball team for the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.
With softball scrapped from this year’s Vietnam SEA Games, ASAPHIL secretary general Cheska Altomonte said it would be best for the Blu Girls to use the year to maximize their preparation for the quadrennial meet.
“The national team does not have a major tournament because softball is not included in the 2021 SEA Games, so the team will focus instead for next year’s major tournament which is the Asian Games,” Altomonte said in a recent Facebook live session of Pureplay Kwentuhan.
The former Blu Girls captain said preparing early should be prioritized as the national squad aims to secure a podium finish for the first time since softball was included in the list of sports disciplines for the Asiad in 1990.
The Blu Girls finished fourth in the last two editions, including the 2018 Games in Indonesia where they came close to going home with a bronze medal.
“It’s always been the goal of the team to medal in the Asian Games and I think it’s possible,” said Altomonte.
But preparing for the Asiad will depend on when the Blu Girls can start, given the current COVID-19 pandemic that requires approval from government agencies.
“The preparation needs to start this year despite all the challenges with the pandemic. So it’s hard to navigate that with the current environment because we don’t know when will the team can start training,” she said.