Ten tankers have been officially named to the Philippine Swimming team who will represent the country at the 29th Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia this August 20-25, 2017
Leading the cast are SEA Games veterans and past medalists Jasmine Alkhaldi, Roxanne Ashley Yu, Rosalee Mira Santa Ana, Jessie Khing Lacuna and Joshua Hall.
They will be joined by James Christian Deiparine, Nicole Justine Marie Oliva, Maria Aresa Lipat, Nicole Meah Pamintuan and Xiandi Chua, who are set to swim at this prestigious biennial regional championships for the first time.
Deiparine and Oliva are the only swimmers in the team who have hit the QTA of an individual event; thus securing their slots to this year’s SEA Games team.
Deiparine hit the QTA of the Men’s 50m Breast event, while Oliva surpassed the QTAs of the 100m Back and 400m Free events.
Oliva joint forces with Alkhaldi, Lipat and Pamintuan in hitting the QTA of the Women’s 4x100m Freestyle relay event; while Oliva and Alkhaldi also joint forces with Santa Ana and Chua to hit the QTA of the Women’s 4x200m Freestyle event.
Miranda Renner was suppose to be part of this year’s SEA Games team as the third fastest QTA relay swimmer of the Women’s 100m Free event (with her 59.15 clocking at the Championnats de France Promotionnel last May 27, 2017), but she decided to let go of her slot due to some unavoidable personal circumstances. Thus, Pamintuan, being the fifth fastest QTA relay swimmer in the 100m Free event got the slot.
Lacuna, Hall and Yu on the other hand made it to the team by virtue of being the defending individual event medalists.
With the outcome of the selection of the Philippine Swimming Team to this year’s SEA Games, Philippine Swimming Incorporated is sending a very strong message to the swimming community.
“Hit the Qualifying Time, then you are in!” (Unless you are a defending medalist.)
This decision is definitely not a popular one among swimming followers and the swimming community, especially to those (including me) who have been hoping for the inclusion of certain swimmers who have made a splash at this year’s LC National Championships by hitting above 700 FINA Points in an individual event.
But after thorough contemplation, this decision is actually a POSITIVE PRECEDENT for future selection processes; which, moving forward, will surely pave way to a much better swimming community. A swimming community who won’t rely on “Token” slots, but a community who will strive even harder in order to hit the specified qualifying times to earn slots to the team, thus improving the quality of the sport in the country.
Admiration goes to PSI’s SEA Games Selection Committee who have come-up with this very hard decision for the swimming community.
A plea to Philippine Swimming Incorporated
If there’s any way that Philippine Swimming Incorporated could add more swimmers to the team; it would be a welcome treat to the swimming community to see Sacho Ilustre and Axel Ngui in our SEA Games line-up, as well as Sam Alcos, if Joshua Hall decides to forgo of his slot.
All three have registered above 700 FINA Points in an individual event at the recently concluded LC Nationals; thus, adding these three to the team is definitely worth considering.
On bended knees, we beg.