Dagupan’s athletes lack training for 2023 R1AA

By March 19, 2023Sports


DAGUPAN City may not be able to defend its back-to-back title in the Region 1 Athletic Association (R1AA) set to be held in May this year in San Carlos City owing to lack of training due to lack of funds.

According to Finnela Sim, sports head of Dagupan City, the division meet of the City Schools Division is still going on so the selection of the athletes cannot be completed and can only hope that the limited training period can still prepare the full delegation.

She said while other school divisions continued to train their athletes, the training of athletes in Dagupan was completely stopped owing to absence of funds due to continued inaction of the 2023 budget by the city council’s committee on finance and appropriations manned by the majority members.

Worse, she said, the 50-meter Olympic-size swimming pool which Dagupan swimmers used to train was neglected and was just repaired temporarily in time for the swimming competition of the City School’s Division Meet.

Sim said at least city’s swimmers need not go to San Carlos City or to Clark Swimming pool and pay training fees. “The past administration completely neglected maintenance of the Dagupan Pool Site,” she added.

Notwithstanding the expected tough challenges posed by athletes of other school divisions in Region 1, Sim concedes that  local athletes may be way behind in training but she remained hopeful because   “magagaling naman ang  mga Batang Dagupeno.”

She said Dagupan City athletes will see action in all events but it is only in swimming events where they have better chances of winning gold medals, and not as many as when the city captured the back-to-back R1AA championships in 2018 and 2019.

She said that in those R1AA Meets, Dagupan City also dominated in arnis, gymnastic—especially in aerobics and boxing.

“We are our hoping that the 2023 annual budget of Dagupan will be passed soon because  the athletes need food, training allowance, equipment and of course uniform to wear,” Sim added.

She recalled that in the previous term of Mayor Fernandez, Dagupan was providing specialized coaches in various events, in addition to DepEd’s own in-house coaches.

“But because the annual budget has not yet been passed, we were not able to hire additional coaches (except the one in swimming), for our children,” Sim said.

She added a reenacted 2022 budget of the past city administration, there was no item provided for training of athletes so no realignment of budget for sports is possible.  (Leonardo Micua)

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