THE Swim League Philippines (SLP) has expanded its program in grassroots level with the holding of Manila Swim Fest this Saturday (November 5) at the Philippine Columbian Association (PCA) in Plaza Dilao, Paco, Manila.
SLP president Fred Ancheta announced that apart from medals and prizes, the Manila Swim Fest will be used as qualifying meet to select the ‘best swimmers’ who will be sent to competitions in Singapore and Thailand next year.
“Under the leadership of SLP through our founder Joan Mojdeh, we announced that the top performers in the Manila Swim Fest will be included in the team that will see action in the FINA-sanctioned tournament in Singapore, while our young and developmental team will be sending to Thailand as part of SLP grassroots development program,” said Acheta in Tabloids Organization in Philippine Sports (TOPS) “Usapang Sports’ on Thursday at Behrouz Persian Cuisine in Sct. Tobias, Quezon City.
“With the support of Langoy Pilipinas of Darren Evangelista, Yingfa Philippines and the Manila Sports Council (MASCO), Manila Swim Fest will be the biggest in terms of participation so far under the SLP program,” Ancheta added at the weekly sports forum sponsored by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC), Games and Amusements Board (GAB), Pagcor and Behrouz Persian Cuisine.
A total of 500 swimmers from 44 clubs and teams are confirmed to compete in the tournament which is also sponsored by CNLCSCA and Solid Coaches Association and part of Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna’s comprehensive sports program.
SLP has strong ties with the international swimming community, including the Dubai-based organizer of the Hamilton Aquatic Short Course at the Hamdan Sports Complex where Filipinos were perennial medalists, including current Philippine junior mainstay Michaela Jasmine Mojdeh.
Recently, the 9-man SLP squad under the supervision of coach Bryan Estipona have competed in the said tournament and brought home one silver and four bronze medals.
“We did not expect the result of our campaign to be like this. Overall, all our swimmers have new personal bests, yung mga medals bonus na lang. I am very grateful to the SLP and the Killerwhale team for the trust given to me and for the support of the parents,” said Estipona.
Charles Janda grabbed the silver medal in the 50m backstroke, while Italian-born Pinoy David Morvyn Gillego captured two bronze medals (50m back at 50m butterfly) and Andrae Kenzie Samontanes (200m fly) and Louis Andrei Lim (100m breast) added bronze medals.
“Sayang po at nagkamali ako sa turn, gold medal sana ako,” recalling the 14-year old.
“Blessing in disguise po yung desisyon ng Mommy ko na dito na ulikami sa Pilipinas. Mas nabigyan ko ng pansin yung training. Hopefully, makasali pa ako sa mas maraming international event,” quipped Gillego.