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New stars emerged at PANAGOC Swimfest

The country’s most decorated junior swimmers continued to rise against the challenge even as new swimming stars emerged at the podium on Saturday in the penultimate day of the Philippine Aquatics, Inc. (PAI) National Age Group Championships at the Teofilo Yldefonso Swimming Pool inside the famed Rizal Memorial Sports Center (RMSC) in Malate, Manila.

Veteran internationalists Jamesrey Mishael Ajido and Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh shone brightest among their fellow National Team members winning two gold medals in their respective Classes, but the day also belonged to upcoming Pia Severina Magat, Pia Ato, Nicola Diamante, and Jasmine’s younger brothers Behrouz Mohammad and Mikhael Jasper Mojdeh.

The 15-year-old Ajido, holder of Asian junior record in boys 12-14 100m butterfly (55.98), splashed his way in winning his fourth gold medal topping the boys 15 Class A 50-m backstroke (28.50), 100-m freestyle (53.97) and 100-m butterfly (56.23). He won his first gold in the 200-m freestyle (2:00.42) on the opening day Friday of the three-day tourney backed by the Philippine Sports Commission, the Philippine Olympic Committee, and Speedo.

He beat Elijah Ebayan of South Warriors (30.24) and John Jeremy Villanueva of Pasig (30.42) before thumping his class against Matt Aaaron of Elizabeth Seton (58.02) and Rodevic Gonzalvo of Green Blasters (58.32). In butterfly, he beat Rodevic Gonzalvo (1:00.12) and Elijah Ebayen (1:01.77).

“Maganda na po yung pakiramdam ko, hopefully po, mas heal na po yung balikat ko before the National tryouts in August,” said the multi-titled international referring to the injury in his left shoulder he sustained during the ASEAN School tryouts last month.

Dubbed ‘The Water Beast’, Mojdeh, the two-time World Junior Championship campaigner, topped the girls' 17-over Class A 100-m breaststroke clocking 1:16.62 against Dee Vianne Catedrilla of Nautilus (1:20.73) and Gerice Oyaman of FTW Royals (1:21.64). She finished second to Camille Buico (29.01) in the 50-m butterfly (29.27).

His youngest brothers and teammates at the BEST Elite make their mark with Behrouz Mohammad claiming the gold in the boys 13 Class A 100-m backstroke (1;16.49), 100-m fly (1:05.41), and 400-m Individual Medley, while the 9-year old Mikhael Jasper topped the boys 9 Class B 50-m breast (51.45), 100-, fly (1:34.70), 50-m fly (38.60), 100-m free (1:16.94) and 200-m free (2:45.76).

Magat, the 7-year-old wonder from Sharkpeedo Swim, likewise won the 100-m freestyle (2:08.42) and 50-, breast (1:08.28), while Graziella Sophia Ato delivered in the girls 14 Class B 100-m free (1:09.49) and 400-Im (6:02.10), while Diamante topped the girls 13Class A 50-m back (32.79).

Other Day 2 winners are Arianne Lim in girls 11 Class A 50-m back (38.28), Sophia Rose Garra 12 Class A 50m back (32.69), Elizabeth Requuioma 15 Class A 100-m fly (1:09.51), Savinahh Oliveros 16 100-m fly (1:09.40), Kyla Louise Bulaga 14 Class A 100-m fly (1:07.69).

Ajido, Sy share limelight in PAI National Age Group Championship Day 1

Asian junior record holder Jamesrey Mishael Ajido and multi-title internationalist Mishka Sy topped their respective age class to lead early winners on Friday at the start of the Philippine Aquatics, inc. (PAI) National Age Group Championships at the Teofilo Yldefonso Swimming Pool in Malate, Manila.

Coming off from a shoulder injury he sustained during the ASEAN School Games tryouts last month, the 15-year-old Ajido claimed the gold in boys’ 15-class A 200-meter freestyle, clocking two minutes and 00.42 seconds beating Ashton Clyde Jose of Leviathan Swim Club (2:07.63) and Zoilo Larrazabal of Rising Atlantis (2:08.00).

“Iniinda pa rin niya yung injury sa kaliwang balikat, kahit medyo mahaba na rin ang ipinahinga niya after the ASEAN School tryouts. Minabuti na niyang lumangoy para makita na rin yun extent ng progress ng kanyang therapy and preparation na rin for the National tryouts sa August,” said Love Ajido, mother of Jamesrey.

Ajido gave the country the first-ever gold medal at the Asian level after ruling the boys’ 12-14 100m butterfly at the 11th Asian Age Group Championships last February at the New Clark City Aquatics Center. His winning time of 55.98 seconds was a new meet record, erasing the 56.36 set by Chinese Wang Yu Xiang in 2019.

Likewise, Sy, Ajido’s teammate at FTW Royals Swim club, became the meet's first double winner, claiming the gold in the girls 17-over Class A 400-m Individual Medley (5:17.43) and 200-m freestyle (2:13.14). The 19-year-old Sy, a consistent member of the National junior team, demolished her rivals Aubrey Tom (5:37.51) and Dianna Cruz (5:37.58) and then beat fellow junior standout Camille Buico of Rising Atlantis (2:16.61) and Atasha Dela Torre (2:20.63) in freestyle.

PAI Secretary-General Batangas 1st District Congressman Eric Buhain led officials and guests in a moment of silence as the swimming community paid tribute to the late PAI Executive Director Coach Francisco “Chito’ Rivera before the opening dive in the championships sponsored by the Philippine Sports Commission, Philippine Olympic Committee, and Speedo.

“We’re very thankful to all the support and prayers.,” said Rivera’s wife Evangeline.

Buhain and fellow Olympian Akiko Guevara, the current president of the Philippine Olympian Association (POA), hand over a framed white t-shirt to Rivera’s family as a gesture of pride and respect.
“Truly, a great loss for Philippine swimming. But his legacy lives on as we continued to put our best foot forward in our target to further enhance the development not just for swimming but for other discipline in aquatics such open water, water polo, diving and artistic swimming, from regional up to the national level,” said Buhain.

Other winners included Asian campaigner Kyla Louise Bulaga in girls 14 class A 200m freestyle (2:18.02), siblings Mikhael Jaspe Mojdeh and Behrouz Mohammad Mojdeh of Behrouz Elite team in the boys 9 class A 200m freestyle (2:45.76) and boys  13 class A 400m IM (5:12.65), respectively. Yzac Valencia in the boys 10 Class A 200m freestyle (2;43.07) and Graziella Sophia Ato of One Ilocos Sur in the girls 14 Class B 400, IM (6:02.10).

World Aquatics gives high marks to PAI hosting of Asian Age Group Championships

World Aquatics gives high marks to PAI...

World Aquatics gives high marks to PAI hosting of Asian Age Group Championships

Photos: (from left): Asian Aquatics Vice President Daichi Suzuki, World Aquatics President Capt. Husain Al-Musallam, PAI President Miko Vargas and PA Secretary General Eric Buhain.

Add another "A," for a top grade, to the 11th Asian Age Group Aquatics Championships (AAGC), which the Philippines recently hosted and concluded at the New Clark City Aquatics Center in Capas, Tarlac.

Striking even is how Capt. Husain Al-Musallam, president of the world governing body in aquatics, described the country's hosting of the more than 33-nation, two-weeklong splash that the World Aquatics (WA) even authorized as an Olympic Qualifying event.

"Before I came here, I was not thinking about the facility I will see, but what I saw was beautiful," Al-Musallam said during his visit and ocular of the whole hosting and near the end of competitions last week in Tarlac. "It's not Asia, but you can also host world events."

The AAGC organizers, led by Philippine Aquatics, Inc. (PAI) in partnership with the Local Organizing Committee (LOC), were present when the World Aquatics top executive went on with his accolades.

"The volunteers, the organizing committee, Philippine Aquatics (Inc.), the city, the airport—all one team. You rarely find everybody together, everybody working to create an excellent environment for the athletes to compete."

World Aquatics was aware that hosting the AAGC is a very challenging task. For this year's edition alone, the Philippine Aquatics, Inc. vigorously worked with partners—and with big support from Malacañang via Memorandum Circular 43 ordering help from various sectors of the country—to accommodate some 1,400 athletes, coaches, and trainers from Asia.

And the WA verdict to the Philippine effort: "What I have said before, you deserved a 10."

The PAI, led by Michael "Miko" Vargas, humbly accepted the high rating from the WA. "We truly appreciate not only your presence but also the support and guidance you've been giving to aquatics in Asia, especially the Philippines. From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you."

For his part, PAI sec-gen and Batangas 1st District Rep. Eric Buhain, shared the honor of the successful staging of the AAGC with the whole Philippine aquatics community and countrymen who pitched in with whatever help they could.

"We're very grateful to the trust given by World Aquatics to Philippine Aquatics. It's not something that we take lightly. In fact, we will use this trust to work harder and always keep our best foot forward every step of the way. This success, this honor, is not just for PAI but for the Filipino nation."

Meanwhile, Farid Fatahian, Asia Aquatics liaison officer to the 11th Asian Age Group Championships local organizing committee, said that with the success of the AAGC in Capas, Tarlac, he is already looking forward to the Philippines hosting another Asian-level competition.

"I’m very satisfied (with the Philippine hosting), and Asian Aquatics is very happy with what you have done for the success of AAGC. The WA and the AA see no problem with working hand in hand with the PAI (in future projects)," added Al-Musallam.

Philippine Anti-Doping Agency Act...

Philippine Anti-Doping Agency Act...

Philippine Anti-Doping Agency ActApril 16, 2024 - Sa Kumite ng Sports and Youth Development sa Mababang Kapulungan ng Kongreso, nakasama natin si Mr. Emiliano Simonelli ang Associate Director for Compliance Unit ng World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
Ang layunin ng pagpupulong na ito ay ang pagpasa ng batas laban sa paggamit ng performance-enhancing substances na sumusunod sa regulasyon ng insternasyonal na pamantayan.

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