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Sarangani hosts first sports competition after pandemic hiatus

Photo by Jake T. Narte

ALABEL, Sarangani -- After a break due to Covid 19, the Philippine Taekwondo Association (PTA) Regional Management Committee XII-A hosted the first SOX-wide 2022 Regional Inter-School Taekwondo Poomsae Championship on July 30 at the Provincial Capitol Gymnasium.

It was also dubbed as the 1st Governor Ruel D. Pacquiao Sports Competition.

A total of 163 participants from 10 different chapters from General Santos City, Koronadal, and the municipalities of Sarangani attended the event along with their professional coaches, junior coaches, and families.

Provincial Sports Coordinator Alma Corazon Gabuat greeted the participants on behalf of Governor Pacquiao. In her welcome remarks, Gabuat acknowledged the hiatus forced upon by the pandemic but she emphasized the importance of sports in inculcating sportsmanship in the young minds of SOCCSKSARGEN athletes.

“If education teaches values, sports practices values,” said Gabuat. She expressed her hope for the competition to “jumpstart sports opportunities” in SOCCSKSARGEN starting with Sarangani.

Gabuat highlighted the importance of instilling “the love for sports” especially in a gadget-reliant era, which may “deteriorate the physical and mental well-being” of children, especially during the pandemic.

Phot by Jake T. Narte

PTA RMC XII-A Chairman Porferio M. Tripoli, who welcomed the participants in his Message and Formal Opening, emphasized the importance of sports in the pandemic setting.

“Ito talaga ang outlet ng mga bata na kailangan nila,” Tripoli said, relating to the COVID-19 context, “knowing that taekwondo is a world sport – it is an Olympic sport – this is their chance for their children to show their skills.”

Antonio D. Umbod, Jr, Game Committee of PTA-R12, led the Presentation of Delegation of the Poomsae Competition.

Umbod revealed that among the 163 participants, two were children with disabilities. The event stressed encouraging inclusivity and cultivation of the youth.

Umbod also emphasized PTA’s vision of “strengthening the sports club” through a comprehensive grassroots sports program. Gabuat, for her part, stressed it as Sarangani’s target to “empower our grassroots development” in each municipality.

According to Umbod, the program is one of the extension programs of PTA which will also identify qualifiers for the national pool.

“Hindi lang for beginners, kundi for elite (players),” explained Umbod.

Gabuat thanked Governor Pacquiao for approving the conduct of the competition.

“Kung naa tay I-lobby na sports initiatives, siyempre aprubahan dayon,” said Gabuat, expressing her gratitude. “Dili na ta maglisod ba.”

Mia Richelle Dabalos, Gold Medalist of the 2022 National Poomsae Championship, led the Oath of Amateurism. Dabalos expressed her joy seeing “most of the players play like how it was before.”

“Lalong mas na excite yung mga manlalaro at yung mga magsisimula pa lang po maglaro kagaya po ng mga mapapanood natin ngayon,” Dabalos said.

Photo by Jake T. Narte

The Poomsae Competition identified its prominent winners by grade school, cadet, junior, and senior categories.

Kiro Hiroshi Nacar, 22, from Dragon Heart Taekwondo Academy General Santos City won gold in the senior category of freestyle kicking. From Alabel, 20-year-old Patreck Luardo won silver in the same category.

For the junior female category, Francheska Saberon from Generals Taekwondo Academy in General Santos City won 1st place, along with 2nd placer Neeve Jolie Cañete from DHTA GenSan, and 3rd placer Sabrina Divynne Balagtas from Generals Taekwondo Academy. (Dyulliana Anushkah Toyogon, with Febilyn Arroza SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)

About the Author

Catherine Apelacio

Information Officer III

Region 12

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