Sorry but no incentive for Wesley for now — PSC
Published : Saturday, August 31, 2013 00:00
Written by : Ed Andaya
KAZAN Universiade gold medalist GM Wesley So will not get even a single centavo when the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) gives away millions of pesos in cash incentives to deserving athletes during a thanksgiving dinner at the PSC Main Bldg. in Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.
The National Chess Federation of the Philippines ( NCFP), headed by president/chairman Prospero “Butch” Pichay, has not formally informed the PSC about So’s historic gold medal-winning performance in the 27th Summer Universiade held last July 4-18 in Kazan, Republic of Tatarstan, Russia.
“The PSC, headed by chairman Richie Garcia, is open to the idea of giving Wesley (So) the cash incentives that he deserves for bringing honors to the Filipino nation by winning the country’s first-ever Universiade gold,”said PSC executive director Atty. Guillermo Iroy in an interview with People’s Tonight.
“Under the law, all Filipino athletes who won the gold, silver and even bronze medals in Olympic, world, Asian and Southeast Asian competitions, are entitled to cash incentives,” explained Iroy on behalf of Garcia.
Added Iroy: “But until now, we have not received any formal communication or request from the NCFP, which is the duly-recognized association for chess.”
“If we get a letter from the NCFP, I’m sure Chairman Garcia and the PSC Board will consider Wesley So’s achievement in the Universiade.”
Five-time women’s world champion and Webster University coach Susan Polgar lamented the failure of both the PSC and NCFP to recognize So’s achievements in the Kazan Universiade.
“It’s a pity,” twitted Polgar from Tromso, Norway where she now serves as one of the chief commentators and analysts for the FIDE World Cup.
“Wesley is a very special talent. He always proudly represents your country in international competitions,” added Polgar when informed about the reasons why the 19-year-old Filipino champion is still not being given the proper recognition after almost two months since his Kazan success.
Reached for comment, NCFP executive director GM Jayson Gonzales admitted he is still waiting for instruction from Pichay before submitting the report of So’s achievement to the PSC.
“I’m still waiting for the instruction from the (NCFP) president,” said Gonzales. “He is the only one who can endorse it or not.”
Among those who will be honored and given cash incentives by the PSC during the 6 p.m. program at the PSC Athletes dining hall are the Smart-Gilas basketball team, which bagged thesilver medal in rhe recent FIBA-Asia championship in Manila; golfer Mia Legaspi and taekwondo jin Pauline Gomez, who won gold medals in the Asian Youth Games in Nanjing, China.
The Gilas team will receive P1M in incentives, according to the PSC report.
Also to be feted are the medalists in the Putra Cup golf tournament and the Asian junior wushu championships held in Manila.
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– GM Susan Polgar