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EJ Obiena banners Philippine squad

Exposure to stronger opponents will be the main goal of the Philippines in the Asian Indoor Athletics Championships from 10 to 12 February in Nur Sultan, Kazakhstan.

Philippine Athletics Track and Field  Association secretary general Edward Kho said while winning medals is good, the players have to be used to playing against top-caliber athletes.

“We have to focus on the quality of the performance. If the quality of the performance is good, the results will follow,” Kho told Daily Tribune in a phone conversation.

“We need to instill this impression to the athletes that they belong in the higher level of competition.”

Pole vaulter EJ Obiena will banner the country’s 17-man delegation in the tournament against the best athletes in Asia.

Also joining the team are Olympian sprinters Eric Cray and Kristina Knott, pole vaulter Natalie Uy and long jumper Janry Ubas.

Completing the cast are Leonard Grospe (high jump), Mark Harry Diones (triple jump), Mariano Masano (800 meters), John Cabang, Jelly Paragile, and Melissa Escoton (60m hurdles), Sarah Dequinan and Alexei Caimoso (pentathlon), Hokett Delos Santos (pole vault), Michael del Prado and Edwin Giron (4 x400m relay).

Kho also said those who want to qualify in major competitions like the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest in August can earn qualification points in the Asian tournament or hit the needed qualifying standards

“This is a continental competition so the points given here will be higher. What is also good about hitting the standard is that it relieves you of the pressure,” Kho said.

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