SEA Games: Filipino tennis coach looks to repeat success of 2005
The Philippines national tennis team wants to improve on its performance in 2017, when it plunges into action in the Southeast Asian Games, which begin later this month.
The Philippines only managed to bag 2 silver and 2 bronze medals and coach PJ Tierro hopes they fare better this time especially when the team plays in front of the home crowd.
"I played in 2005 before so I know the feeling of playing here in the Philippines. You need to do our best talaga," Tierro said in a recent interview.
"It's good but may pressure talaga because you really have to win it every single time because the crowd is with you every time."
Tierro was part of the men's team -- which included Johnny Arcilla, Mamiit, and Eric Taino -- that won gold the last time the Philippines hosted the Games 14 years ago.
Mamiit won 2 other golds -- in men's singles and mixed doubles with Riza Zalameda.
Overall, the Philippines also won a silver and 3 bronze medals that year.
National tennis player AJ Lim said he is expecting a much better outing compared to 2 years ago in Kuala Lumpur.
Back then, he said, he was merely a rookie on the Southeast Asian stage.
"I didn't get to play singles and that's my dream the singles. I didn't expect much from myself that time I was just playing for experience because it was my first time before," said Lim, who has been training consistently for the Games in the past 5 months.
"I'm thinking this year it will be different because I'm playing singles and will give my all for the Philippines."
The country is expecting tough competition from Thailand, Laos and Cambodia, which have been really supportive to their tennis program.
"Laos and Cambodia they are getting like for us Fil-Ams, they have French-Laos din. It's really tough for us for sure," he said. — Early Edition, ANC, Oct. 29, 2019
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