54-man Pinoy squad off to Asian Youth Games

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A total of 54 Filipino athletes will fly to Nanjing, China on Thursday to compete in the 2013 Asian Youth Games (AYG) slated August 16 to 24.

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AYG Chief of Mission and national shooter Nathaniel “Tac” Padilla said that the team will compete in athletics, badminton, basketball, fencing, golf, judo, rugby, shooting, swimming, tennis, table tennis, weightlifting and tae kwon do.

“Our athletes will fight hard for them to notch a gold medal for the country and we’re not counting out the possibilities,” said Padilla, noting that the athletes are all inspired by Gilas Pilipinas’ silver medal finish in the recent FIBA Asia Championship.

The Filipino golf and rug- by players are seen to have brighter chance in bagging a gold medal.

“Our athletes must have seen what our Gilas team did in the FIBA-Asia. We will rely on the same never-say-die spirit,” Padilla said.

In the 2009 Asian Youth Games in Singapore, the Philippines won a silver in bowling and a bronze in athletics.

“We hope to surpass that,” said Padilla, who was only 12 years old when he won a gold in the 1976 World Junior Shooting Championships in Mexico.

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