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Mindanao training center for athletes near completion

First Posted 07:41:00 02/15/2011

MANILA? A training center ideal for Mindanao-based national athletes is slowly taking shape in Davao Del Sur.

Commissioner Chito Loyzaga of the Philippine Sports Commission said on Monday the 12-hectare sports facility ? bigger than the eight-hectare Rizal Memorial Sports Complex ? was five months away from completion when he visited it over the weekend.

Located in Matti, Digos City, the Davao Del Sur Cultural Sports and Business Complex has a standard track and field oval, Olympic-size swimming pool, gymnastics indoor sports complex and other outdoor facilities, according to Loyzaga.

The commissioner said that based on the plan, the gymnastics indoor sports complex, which could potentially seat 5,000, could be transformed to host indoor events such as basketball, volleyball, badminton, taekwondo and boxing, among others.

"It's an opportunity the POC (Philippine Olympic Committee) and the PSC can explore with Digos City," said Loyzaga.

An hour-and-a-half ride from Davao City, the sports complex is the project of Davao Del Sur Gov. Douglas Cagas.

"We can use this facility as training center for our Mindanao athletes," said Loyzaga, adding he had already informed the PSC board about it and would propose the same in the POC executive board meeting on Wednesday.

"The training of athletes are somehow affected if you uproot them and send them to a new environment," Loyzaga noted.

Aside from becoming a potential training center for athletes, Loyzaga said Governor Cagas has bared plans to build a hotel, commercial area for visitors and dormitories for athletes.

Meanwhile, Loyzaga, who was appointed Philippine chef de mission to the 2011 Southeast Asian Games, will attend the SEAG Federation Council meeting on Feb. 26 in Bali, Indonesia where the number of sports and events will be finalized.

There are 44 sports and over 500 events being proposed in Indonesia, which is shaping up as the biggest edition of the biennial meet ever.


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