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Naga hosts Asean youth table tennis tourney

NAGA CITY --- Southeast Asia’s best youth athletes in table tennis are vying for honors and camaraderie and friendship in the 24th Southeast Asian Junior & Cadet Table Tennis Championship that the city government of Naga is hosting. A 5 - day spectacle takes center stage at the activity center of Robinsons Place Naga starting yesterday, July 4, up to July 8, this year. A total of about 127 young table tennis players from seven of the 10 member- countries of the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)— Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the host country, Philippines – will vie for the medals and the chance to join the Asian Cadet and Junior Table Tennis Championships in Myanmar. Other tournaments being targeted for the best players to compete in are the Tokyo Exchange Games and the Asian Games this August 2018. The game is composite of two categories under which the players will compete— the Junior category for the 18 year olds and above 15 years and the Cadet category for the 15 year olds and below. Youth Olympic Qualifiers from the countries of Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Philippines are also among the participants in the Naga tournament. The Philippines had already earned gold medals in the past Southeast Asian Cadet and Junior Table Tennis Championships. The Philippine Table Tennis Federation (PTTF), headed by Ting Ledesma, and the Southeast Asia Table Tennis Association (SEATTA) are spearheading the games in Naga for the Philippines as host. Ledesma stated that through the event, as well as the recently concluded Metro Naga Super League Grand Prix Table Tennis Tournament, they are aiming to introduce and promote table tennis sports in the countryside. With Naga City now focusing to develop varied sports events thru its One Student, One Sports program, the City Government is enthusiastic about the conduct of the 24th Southeast Asian Junior and Cadet Table Tennis championships in the city. Naga City had recently been excelling in training and producing sports champs in the field of swimming and gymnastics. The 24th Southeast Asian Junior & Cadet Table Tennis Championship is sanctioned by the Southeast Asian Table Tennis Association (SEATTA). Singapore was host in last year’s edition of the youth table tennis championship. The tournament topbills the best of the youth paddlers in the Southeast Asian region, all challenging for sporting glory as it promises to capture the thrill and excitement of table tennis, otherwise known among local Asian enthusiasts as “ping-pong.” With report by Armie Gunay/CEPPIO

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