FIL-SPANISH hurdler John Cabang Tolentino spearheads the six-member Philippine team seeing action in the Asian Indoor Athletics Championships slated Feb. 10 to 12 in Astana, Kazakhstan with high hopes of making the national team.
The 21-year-old Mr. Tolentino will be joined by Southeast Asian Games gold medalist Eric Cray, whom the former could hope to succeed if and when the 34-year-old Fil-Am decides to call it career in the future.
Mr. Tolentino emailed the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association and flew to the country in the Weekly Relay Finals in November last year to make his intention of running for the country and flag known.
He, in fact, will fund his own Astana trip, and show to the country that he truly means business.
And the nation could have a potential winner in its hands as Mr. Tolentino boasts of a personal best in the 110-meter hurdles of 13.74 seconds, which is faster than the national record of 13.78 set by Clinton Bautista in copping last year’s Hanoi SEA Games gold.
Apart from the two, long jumper Janry Ubas, heptathlete Sarah Dequinan, triple jumper Harry Diones and high jumper Leonard Grospe and coach Dario de Rosas are joining the squad.
The composition of the team was actually pruned down from the original 17 members that included World Championships pole-vault bronze winner EJ Obiena and SEA Games sprint gold medalist Kristina Knott due to budgetary constraints. — Joey Villar