By Nariyoung Kim
The Philippine Amateur Baseball Association (PABA) is preparing and organizing 18 players to play in the upcoming 10th Baseball Federation of Asia Under-15 (U15) Championship held in Shenzhen, China on August 16-25.
PABA is hoping for baseball to develop in the country and as well as to improve the popularity of the Philippines to foreign countries.
Ranking in the 33rd spot in the 2018 WBSC world rankings, the Philippine team are prepared to clash with this continents best and strives to face the high-ranking teams such as Japan, Korea, and Taipei.
“The PABA, with the solid support of the Philippine Sports Commission, is working on the country’s quality participation in sanctioned tournaments to improve our once competitive world ranking,” PABA president Chito Loyzaga said, “this participation of the Philippine team is a vital contribution to the PABA’s initiative to tap new blood and elevate standards of the sport through the proper formation and fielding of competitive team.”
The members of the U15 team was selected with “exhaustive and diligent tryout process attended by 92 players from different parts of the country,” as described by the Head coach Ricard Jimenez with assistant coach Anthony Dizer, Jr. and team manager Mike Asuncion.
“The association is overwhelmed by the general interest of our youth baseball players,” Layzaga said, “it just shows there is recovering popularity of the sport and PABA hopes to tap more talents especially from the far-flung provinces.”
The players included in the U15 team are Francwin Basanes, Ezykiel Bautista, Jose Emmauiel Cahilo, Francis Cyrus Carino, Raven Paul Cuarto, Niccolo Armando de Castro, John Allen dela Cruz, Khristian Aleck Ferrolino, Marco Daniel Flores, Kim Darwin Jarito, Eman Jesie Javier, Gerry Asher Laylo, Ram Gauvin Matanguihan, Mark Morillo, John Mark Natanawan, Virgilio Jake Roxas, Roan Vrix Terrible and Axl Ross Vispo.