Powerhouse National Capital Region (NCR) is all set to defend its overall championship crown in the 2016 Palarong Pambansa to be held on April 10 to 16 at the Albay Sports and Tourism Complex in Bicol.
The Big City will be banking on its swimmers and gymnasts to deliver as well as in team events such as basketball and volleyball.
In the 2015 edition held in Tagum City, the NCR tankers dominated the pool with more than 30 gold medals in the bag while the gymnastics team earned 30 mints to power the Big City to the overall title.
NCR also swept the boys’ and girls’ basketball, and won the girls’ volleyball crown.
Overall, NCR pocketed 98 golds, 67 silvers and 71 bronzes.
Southern Tagalog Region-A (Calabarzon) settled for second with 51-41-49 followed by Western Visayas Region (42-28-41), Cordillera Administrative Region (24-22-16), Northern Mindanao Region (19-14-39), Central Visayas Region (18-29-29), Cenral Luzon Region (17-10-21), Soccsksargen Region (13-24-28) and Davao Region (13-23-30).
The Palarong Pambansa serves as springboard for young student athletes who want to become members of the national pool and eventually represent the country in international competitions in the future.
Former Southeast Asian Games Male Most Bemedalled swimmer Eric Buhain and fellow SEA Games champion Akiko Thomson were some of the products of the multisporting event.
FRAILEN S. PEREZ