31st SEA Games in Vietnam to open in May 2022

The SEA Games Federation had its official meeting this past Monday and the news are already spreading (refer to the reports of the Philippine News Agency, the Bangkok Post and The Straits Times)…the delayed 31st Southeast Asian Games (referred to as 31st SEA Games or Hanoi 2021) in Hanoi, Vietnam will officially begin in the middle of May 2022 although the specific date has yet to be determined. Take note that the 31st SEA Games were postponed previously due to the COVID-19 crisis that is still ongoing.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Philippine News Agency report. Some parts in boldface…

Vietnam is looking to begin the 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games by the middle of May next year.

This was confirmed during the SEA Games Federation meeting on Monday.

Philippine Olympic Committee president Bambol Tolentino proposed during the online meeting for the event to formally open by May 12.

“As the debate went on, I suggested for a May 12 opening ceremony, a Monday,” Tolentino said. “The Vietnamese organizers will confirm the specific dates soon.

Originally scheduled from November 21 to December 2 this year, the SEA Games, still set to take place in Hanoi, was moved to May due to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic.

Traditionally being done every odd-numbered year ever since its first staging in 1959, the 31st edition would mark the first time the event will happen in an even-numbered year.

A total of 520 events from 40 sports will take place in Hanoi with the Philippine team participating in 39 of the sports.

However, it is expected that the SEA Games will return to its usual every odd-numbered year schedule by the 32nd edition with Cambodia finally getting a chance to host the biennial meet.

But the 2023 host is set to hold the SEA Games at an earlier date, which posed a problem during the federation meeting since the May 2022 start to the Vietnam games has been set too.

For the newcomers on this website, I previously blogged about 2019 Southeast Asian Games (2019 SEA Games) mainly focused on the sport of triathlon which itself was added to the 31st SEA Games (refer to published news reports here and here, plus my own blog post here). The Philippines won the gold and silver medals in the 2019 SEA Games triathlon events for men and women and the gold in the mixed relay triathlon. The Philippines also won the gold, silver and bronze medals in the duathlon events for women, men and mixed relay respectively. In the first quarter of 2020, I featured SEA Games triathlon gold medalists Kim Mangrobang and John Chicano. Personally, I am anticipating the Philippines’ participation in the triathlon and duathlon events of the 31st SEA Games in Vietnam.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Are you looking forward to the 31st SEA Games? What is the one sport you are looking forward to watch in the Hanoi SEA Games? Do you think that the Philippines will be able to win big in the 31st SEA Games in Vietnam? Are you willing to support the Philippine team athletes through the Ayuda sa Atleta program?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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