CLARK – Just two more days to go before the 30th SEA Games officially begins, journalists are pleased with the readiness of the ASEAN Convention Center here, which is the main press center and International Broadcast Centre (IBC) for journalists from around the globe covering the biennial games.
BERNAMA took a look around the press base and was delighted to find working desktop computers, a master control room, massage chairs, a dining hall and a media lounge, which received huge praise from many ASEAN journalists.
Nguyen Tuan Anh from Vietnam Television (VTV), who is covering his first SEA Games, said he is impressed with arrangements at the center as the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) is in a rush to get things ready before the opening ceremony on Saturday (Nov. 30).
“I just arrived in Clark from Hanoi yesterday evening and I’m very surprised by the media center which is very modern, with delicious food provided. However, it is quite hot and competition venues are quite far from the IBC, but I’m fine with that,” he said.
He said that 35 TVT crew members will be covering the event at three main clusters: Metro Manila, Clark, and Subic.
He has his hopes pinned on Vietnam’s athletes bringing home 60 – 70 gold medals, especially from men’s and women’s football.
Jakarta Post journalist, Rahmat Mega Putra, who arrived two days ago, is satisfied with facilities at the Clark media center, too.
“At the moment, accommodation is very good, the only thing is it’s a long journey to competition venues and the traffic here is like what you will find in Jakarta,” he said, hoping Indonesia’s athletes will make their country proud.
The 2019 SEA Games opening ceremony will be held at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan while the closing ceremony is scheduled on Dec 11 at the newly-built New Clark City Athletics Stadium.
Over 8,000 athletes from 10 ASEAN countries and Timor-Leste will be taking part in 56 sports at the competition themed, “We Win as One”.
This is the fourth time the Philippines is hosting the SEA Games after having done so in 1981, 1991 and 2005.
The Malaysian contingent of 773 athletes and 339 officials, led by chef de mission, Datuk Megat Zulkarnain Omardin, is targeting 70 gold medals, 51 silver and 105 bronze from 52 sports. (Bernama)