8000 athletes expected to see action in DAVRAA

a huge cast comprising of 8000 scool-based athletes around the region will converge in Davao City for the annual Davao Regional Athletic Association (DAVRAA) slated next month.

The week-long sports conclave featuring the region’s best elementary and secondary athletes will return to the city for the first time after the regional landscape was reconfigured from the former Southern Mindanao Regional Athletic  Association (SMRAA) in 2003.

Department of Education (DepEd) Davao City Division sports director Bernabe Alicaya bared with the hosting of the city there will be new and returning events that would take place.

The DAVRAA Meet will be staged from February 17 to 23 with the opening ceremonies on February 18 at the newly-built University of Mindanao Sports Complex in Matina.

Some innovationswill be made in the meet’s ceremonial opening like the torch lighting which ditched the traditional naked light for the electric LED torch.

He said the the city government will be providing this technology to illuminate the sports comlex during the opening program.

The DepEd Davao City sport director added that the LED fire is also a substitute for fireworks since there is an ordinance prohibiting the use firecrackers and pyrotechnics.

“This is to make the opening our program unique from the hostings of other divisions,” he said.

Alicaya said the sport of Sepak Takraw will be expanded to include a girls division while the DepEd Davao City continues to pursue the return of boxing in the elementary division.

“We are proposing for that and it will be confirmed by next week,” he said.

On 2014, former DepEd secretary Armin Luistro issued a memorandum to exclude elementary division on the boxing event. This after Jonas Garcia, a fourth-year high school student died during the boxing match in Central Luzon Regional Athletic Association (CLRAA).

Alicaya said the death of the said athlete was due to wrong specifications of the boxing protective gears being used that time.

“Davao City is preparing for that. They will be purchasing the right equipment for that boxing event,” he said.

He said its about time to bring back the boxing event in the elementary division to improve the ‘fixture’ of the athlete and prepare them for their future career.