by Noel Baguio/DavNor PIO
Dapitan City, November 7, 2012 – The Batang Pinoy Games 2012 Mindanao Qualifying Leg successfully opened in the “Shrine City of the Philippines” on Tuesday.
Over 600 delegates representing 40 local government units participated in the kickoff parade that traced the celebrated trail of National Hero Dr. Jose Rizal, when he landed at Sta. Cruz Beach to begin his exile here some 120 years ago.
Philippine Sports Commissioner Akiko Thomson-Guevara expressed satisfaction on the good turnout despite hasty preparations due to sudden change of venue.
She hailed Mayor Patri Bajamunde-Chanfor for readily accepting the challenge of hosting the event, even on a very short notice.
The PSC was forced to look for another venue when Cagayan de Oro City, which in 2011 agreed to host this year’s Mindanao leg, suddenly begged off in providing accommodation for the event for some reasons, just two weeks before the scheduled games.
“This for us is truly a “mirable leg” because we didn’t really know if it’s gonna happen or not,” she said during opening ceremonies at the Jose Rizal Memorial State University Sports Complex, here.
Batang Pinoy Project Director Atty. Jay Alano said Batang Pinoy, which serves as the national sports competition program for children 15 years old and below, is “envisioned to address the need for a grassroots sports program centered on values formation inherent in the practice of sports and fair play”.
Mindanao LGUs try to outdo each other in the sporting events of athletics, arnis, badminton, boxing, chess, karatedo, lawn tennis, swimming, taekwondo, table tennis, and pencak silat.
Meanwhile, the contingent of the Province of Davao del Norte sent by Governor Rodolfo del Rosario once again proved to be a force to reckon with in the qualifier games, which will culminate on November 10, 2012.
Provincial Sports Coordinator Giovanni Gulanes said the DavNor delegation put on a good showing by winning in every event early on the opening games on Wednesday.
As of press time, Rosvel Anne Binondo, 13, from Sto. Tomas, Davao del Norte, ruled the lawn tennis (girls) to advance to the semi-finals.