International tennis bodies allow PH bets to compete in Vietnam SEA Games

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 1) – Filipino tennis stars like Alex Eala and Treat Huey will see action in the 31st Southeast Asian Games set this month at Hanoi, Vietnam.

In a statement released on Sunday, the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) said international tennis governing bodies International Tennis Federation (ITF) and Asian Tennis Federation (ATF) have allowed the country’s participation in the biennial regional sports event.

The ITF and ATF gave the go signal despite POC’s imposition of a suspension order to the local tennis body Philippine Tennis Association (Philta).

“The POC is extending its gratitude to the ITF and ATF for allowing our players to see action in the SEA Games,” said POC president Bambol Tolentino, who was informed of the approval of the two bodies over the weekend.

Last March 17, the POC suspended Philta for failing to comply with an order from the ITF to amend its charter and hold elections for a new set of board members.

Philta has been serving a two-year suspension by the world tennis governing body since late 2020.

Eala and Huey lead the nine-member Philippine tennis team who will compete in the Vietnam SEA Games.

In the lineup shared by national team head coach Chris Cuarto to CNN Philippines, tennis veterans Jeson Patrombon, Francis Casey Alcantara, Eric Olivarez Jr., and Ruben Gonzales will join Huey in the men’s team.

Alcantara and Patrombon were the country's lone gold medalists in tennis in the 2019 SEA Games held in Manila, where they defeated compatriots Gonzales and Huey in the men’s doubles category.

Khim Iglupas, Marian Capadocia, and Jenaila Prulla comprise the women’s team along with Eala, who has won two Grand Slam titles in the girls’ doubles event.

Cuarto said local-based players have been training for the Vietnam SEA Games since February and participated in pocket tournaments as part of their preparations.

“For players based abroad, we are still finalizing their schedules for SEA Games and training since most of them are also in tournaments as well,” Cuarto said in an earlier interview with CNN Philippines.

The 31st SEA Games tennis competitions will run from May 13-22.