The leanest Philippine Olympic delegation of eleven athletes is now in London. They are determined to bring honor to the country against tall odds. Here are the eleven Filipino Olympians for the 2012 London Olympic Games:
Mark Anthony Barriga, 19, in lightflyweight boxing, is from Panabo City, Davao del Norte
He was the first Filipino to qualify for the 2012 Olympics. He won the gold medal in the Sydney Jackson Memorial in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. He qualified during the 2012 World Championships in Azerbaijan.
Marestella Torres, 32, in long jump, is from San Jose, Negros Oriental
She is a four-time SEA Games long jump defending champion. She also won the long jump during the 2009 Asian Athletics and silver in the 2005 Asian Athletics championship. Torres was an Olympian in 2008 at Beijing.
Rene Herrera, 33, in 5000-m run, is from Guimaras
He is a five-time SEA Games defending champion and ranks 8th in Asia in 5000 meters and 3000-m steeplechase.
Jasmine Alkhaldi, 19, in 100m freestyle swimming, is from Paranaque City
She won 3 gold medals in the 2011 Southeast Asian Age Group Championships. She qualified to the Olympics by universality through her best time in the world championships. During the 2010 Singapore National Age Group Championships, she won 2 bronze medals.
Rachel Cabral, 27, in archery is from Tuguegarao, Cagayan
She qualified for the Olympics by placing 6th in her group during the World Archery Championships in Ogden, Utah.
Jesse King Lacuna, 18, in 200-m freestyle swimming, is from Pulilan, Bulacan
He won 6 gold medals in the 2nd Philippine National Games. He qualified for the Olympics through his best time in the 2011 World Championships.
Tomohiko Aldaba Hoshina, 25, in superheavyweight judo is a Fil-Japanese whose mother is from Bulacan and now living in Japan
He garnered 27 ranking points in the 2011 World Judo Championships and among the 20 Asians to qualify for the Olympics. He won the silver medal in the 2007 SEA Games.
Brian Rosario, 29, in skeet shooting is from Manila
He is the best Filipino skeet shooter, and he qualified during the 2011 Sydney Wold Cup Series. He is a minimum shooter at the Italian World Cup of Shotgun and a 2005 SEA Games double gold medalist.
Hidilyn Diaz, 21, in weightlifting (58 kgs.), is from Zamboanga City
She is ranked 9th in the world and was given a wild card entry in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. She won a bronze medal in the 2007 SEA Games and won 2 golds and one silver in the Asian Youth Championships. She will be the Philippine flag bearer during the opening ceremonies.
Daniel Manabat Caluag, 25, in BMX Cycling, was born in Bulacan but is now living in the United States
He is among the top 60 riders in the world. He participated in the UCI BMX world championships.
Mark Javier, 31, in archery, is from Dumaguete City
During the 2006 Asian Games he landed 9th place in the individual category. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics he finished his ranking round with a total of 654 points. He qualified for the Olympics during the World Archery Championships in Ogden, Utah.
Athletes who would bring home medals will receive monetary incentives from the national government under the Incentives Act. The incentives will be P5 million each for gold medal winners, P2.5 million each for silver winners and P1 million each for bronze medal winners.
To all our athletes competing in the London Olympics, do your best and make our country proud. At the end of the games, I hope you gain friends and experience which will encourage you to succeed in the future. Kami ay nakasuporta sa inyo hanggang sa huli. God bless at Mabuhay ang atletang Pilipino!