The Philippine National Sepak Takraw Team is ready to defend its title in the premier division of the 33rd King’s Cup World Sepak Takraw Championships.
The Filipinos will battle sepak players from 31 other countries in the tournament that will run until September 30.
Aside from aiming to retain the crown in the men’s doubles category, they will also vie for gold medals in four other events, namely hoop, regu quadrant, and regu team.
“We wish the Philippine sepak takraw team the best of luck. We’re confident that they are capable of replicating the achievement,” said Go For Gold top executive Jeremy Go during the team’s send-off at Vikings Restaurant at the SM by the Bay.
Seasoned players Rheyjey Ortouste, Ronsited Gabayeron, and Emmanuel Escote, will spearhead the men’s team along with Joshua Gleen Bullo, Alvin Pangan, John Carlo Lee, and John John Bobier.
Joining the trip backed by Go For Gold and the Philippine Sports Commission are John Jeffrey Morcillos, Joeart Jumawan, Nestleer Bandivas, Christian George Encabo, and Regie Reznan Pabriga.
“We know that they will make our country proud like they have done before,” added Go.
Forming the women’s squad are Mary Melody Taming, Abegail Sinogbuhan, Gelyn Evora, Josefina Maat, Jean Marie Sucalit, Jea Mae Pepito, Jocielle Fernandez, Aisa Sabellita, Allyssa Bandoym and Lhaina Lheil Mangubat.
Coaches Rodolfo Eco, Hector Memarion, Metodio Suico Jr., and Junmar Aleta will coach the men’s team, while Romulo Ruedas Jr., Esperidion Rodriguez, Gena Mark Saavedra, and Deseree Autor will call the shots for the women’s squad.
The team also brought home a pair of silver medals in team regu and hoop and a bronze effort in the regu during the 2016 edition of the worlds in Thailand.