PHNOM PENH—Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman Richard “Dickie” Bachmann praised Filipino athletes for keeping the country afloat in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games that ends Tuesday.
“I am proud of our athletes,” Bachmann said on Tuesday. “I saw how they worked hard—with my own eyes—while preparing for the games and when they did battle in Cambodia.”
“Each moment our flag was raised in honor of a win was a proud moment for every Filipino,” he said.
Bachmann is only in his fourth month as chairman of the PSC but he already witnessed first-hand how Filipino athletes trained and competed in international competitions.
The SEA Games is the first international competition under his watch and he made sure he had his eyes on each and every athlete in the games that end Tuesday.
Bachmann flew in three days before the opening ceremony and made the rounds—as many as he’s permitted to by the hectic schedule and at times heavy Phnom Penh traffic.
It’s extremely hot in Cambodia—even hotter than back home—but that didn’t deter his eagerness to witness every victory and every gallant effort by athletes who missed the podium.
The Philippines—although looking improbable to repeat as fourth-placer to match the performance in Vietnam last year—has broken the 50-gold medal barrier on Monday night.
And two more gold medals means—with dozens of finals still to be played Tuesday—Filipino athletes have surpassed their harvest in 2022.
That inspires Bachmann to vouch for the PSC’s full support to Team Philippines’ campaign in future international competitions.
“We reaffirm our support to our national athletes,” he said. “The PSC will continue to work as hard as you train. Salamat sa lahat ng inyong sakripisyo!”