Handball team to training in Ilocos Norte

Published June 3, 2021, 10:57 PM

by Waylon Galvez

Handball national team coach Jana Franquelli, middle, gives instructions during one of their practice sessions prior to the 2019 Southeast Asian Games here. (Manila Bulletin File Photo)

The national handball team is finalizing the details of its training camp in a bubble-type setup in Ilocos Norte as the Filipinos prepare for the 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Handball national team coach Jana Franquelli said that they already made the request to the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) with regards to the training as well as other information on preparation for the SEA Games.

“We’ve already submitted our request to the PSC, and we’re just waiting for approval. We’ve identified Ilocos Norte as the venue for our training camp bubble,” said Franquelli in an interview Thursday, June 3, with Manila Bulletin.

“Also we are looking at a possible international tournament before the SEA Games,” added Franquelli.

The national team, according to Franquelli, hopes to begin in July with training camp and end in late August.

As for the international tournament, she said that they are looking at sometime in September.

“There is no tournament on the calendar of events of international handball, but hopefully in the next couple of months, we’ll see. If we can join, we’ll ask the PSC again,” she said.

The sport of handball has four events in the SEA Games on Nov. 21 to Dec. 2, including the indoor men’s and women’s and beach men’s and women’s categories.

Franquelli said that the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) only approved to compete in the men’s beach handball, where the national team earned bronze medal during the 2019 SEA Games here.

The national team, Franquelli said, will almost have the same lineup with just a couple of changes.

“It’s the same team with just a few additions, or changes from the last team that delivered a bronze medal. We hope, of course, to do better in the next SEA Games,” Franquelli said.

Vietnam won the men’s beach handball event in the last SEA Games, while Thailand settled with a silver medal.