Futsal debuts as demo sport in Palaro 2013
MANILA, Philippines -- Futsal, a variant of association football played on a smaller pitch and mainly played indoors, will be a demonstration sport in the forthcoming 2013 Palarong Pambansa to be held in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental from April 21-27, according to the Department of Education (DepEd).
In an interview with GMA News Online, Education Assistant Secretary Tonisito Umali, DepEd spokesman and head of the education department’s Task Force on School Sports, said that the first futsal teams to be fielded will be made up of elementary school girls in teams of five members.
Umali said that futsal is suited to the Philippine education system which caters to about 40,000 public schools.
“Ngunit halos kalahati ng mga paaralan na iyan ay mayroon na pong basketball court na kung saan puwedeng gawin ang futsal. Very basic skills na dapat malaman ng ating mga anak—feet hand, agility skills mangyayari kung sila po ay naglalaro ng futsal,” said Umali.
As of press time, DepEd is awaiting word from the field on how many teams will be fielded in the Palaro albeit futsal is already being introduced in various regions vying in the country’s most prestigious sporting event that gathers the best student-athletes in the country.
Relative to this, Philippine Football Federation president Mariano “Nonong” Araneta said in an earlier interview with GMA News Online that their national sports association opted to team up on football and futsal with the DepEd instead of mounting its own tournament.
“In some countries, they introduce futsal as their grassroots [program] for 6 to 8 [year-old kids] because [the game has] more touches and can be played on basketball courts,” said the PFF head. - Rappler.com