“That is only the continuation of the program of the Philippine Sports Commission,” said Moises Salomon Jr., Iloilo City Youth and Sports Development Office head said, adding that a qualifying game was held already held in Dumaguete City last October.
He said those who are joining the national finals are already “qualifiers”. However, since most of the city athletes are school-based then their training is continuous.
During the qualifying round in Dumaguete, 22 players have qualified for Arnis, 19 in Taekwondo, nine in Pencak Silat and one in Karatedo. There were also qualifiers in Muay Thai and Futsal.
There is still no exact number of contingent to be sent.
He said the city government will try its best to send athletes to the national finals as he recalled that this highly-urbanized city hosted the national finals of the program in 2012.
“This is one good program of the government because it gives our athletes an exposure even if they are out-of-school,” he said.
The program is also a venue for them to be scouted by best schools and even by the national pool.
He said there are city athletes now in the national pool of Wushu and Arnis events.
Salomon said the city government will provide for the transportation and other expenses of the athletes while the Philippine Sports Commission will give them allowance during the five-day event.
Batang Pinoy is open to children 15 years old and below.PNA