The Philippines has expressed interest in hosting 2019 SEA Games (Southeast Asian Games) after Brunei, who is set to host the 30th edition of the Games, formally announced its withdrawal yesterday. In a meeting held in Singapore, the Sultanate expressed its deep regrets for its decision to pull out of its hosting duties, citing lack of time preparation and venue.
In its website, the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) formally reported Brunei’s decision which was relayed through the SEA Games Federation Council meeting held in Singapore on June 5, hours before the formal opening ceremonies of the 28th SEA Games hosted by the Lion City.
If the Philippines formally receives the nod of the SEA Games Federation in hosting 2019 SEA Games, it will be the fourth time that the country will be hosting the largest regional athletic meet.
It hosted the previous edition of the SEA Games in 1981, 1991, and 2005. The Philippines is originally set to host the Games in 2025. In 2005, the Philippines won the overall championship since its first participation in the Games in 1977.
On the other hand, the tiny Southeast Asian Sultanate of Brunei hosted the 20th edition of the SEA Games in 1999. It was one of the editions of the Games that had the least number of sports/disciplines with twenty-one (21) as the host nation did not have enough facilities to hold some of the regular sports in the SEA Games calendar. In addition, many of the events for female athletes were scrapped during the said edition because of the strict and conservative tradition in the predominantly Muslim state.
In a related news, the Philippines won its first gold medal in the 2015 Singapore Games via a first place finish by Claire Adorna in women’s triathlon with a time of two hours, 13 minutes and eight seconds. It was a 1-2 finish for the Philippines as Kim Mangrobang captured the silver medal with a time of two hours, fourteen minutes, and twenty-six seconds.
With one gold medal, four silver medals and five bronze medals, the Philippines is currently in sixth place in the medal standings after the Games formally opened yesterday, June 5.