Sibol, the Philippines’ national esports team, officially kicks off its campaign to the 31st Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi on May 12-May 23, 2022. Supported by wireless network firm Smart Communications, Sibol debuted in the 30th SEA Games and has since secured other major sponsors including PLDT, TV5, Cignal, and Realme.
After weeks of tryouts, Sibol completed its roster in February with a total of 55 athletes and nine coaches.
In a press briefing hosted by the Philippine Esports Organization (PeSO), the team unveiled its new logo, a first look at the official jersey, and its slogan, “Lakad Matatag.” This battle cry was taken from PeSO executive director Marlon “Lon” Marcelo’s caster call from a Dota2 match.
PeSO is the country’s national governing body for esports. It has been a member of the International Esports Federation (IESF) since 2012 and an associate member of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) since 2020.
PeSO also gave a sneak peek at the athlete roster during the press briefing. In attendance were Kristoffer Ed L. Ricaplaza – MLBB coach, Christine Ray Roque Natividad – Wildrift No.1 Female team SEA, Angel Danica Quiros Lozada – Wildrift No.1 Female Team SEA, Dennis O. Ramos Jr. – CrossFire FPS game, Ralph Andrei M. Llabres – Sibol overall head coach, and Jabs Escutin – Sibol general manager.
Sibol is set to introduce its complete team within the next few weeks who will be competing in all 10 esports events at the 31st SEA Games: “League of Legends,” “FIFA 4,” “CrossFire,” “Arena of Valor,” “Garena Free Fire,” “Mobile Legends Bang Bang (MLBB),” “League of Legends: Wild Rift,” and “PUBG.” The first batch of delegates is scheduled to fly to Hanoi on the week of May 9, 2022.
The Sibol team is training at the Brenn Esports Facility in Makati, which is funded by Smart.
Bringing in an all-new Sibol delegation, featuring an all-female team and twin athletes, Sibol will debut its first all-female team for “League of Legends: Wild Rift” at the 31st SEA Games, alongside the first-ever twin male athletes who will be competing individually for Wild Rift.
With the exception of Jabs Escutin, the 2019 MLBB manager who brought home the gold medal, the roster comprises new talents from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
Sibol first made history for winning five medals (three gold, one silver, one bronze) dominating Dota 2, Starcraft II, and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, and Tekken 7 at the 30th SEA Games held in Manila in 2019.
With an overall score of 3-2, Sibol defeated Indonesia in the “Mobile Legends: Bang Bang” discipline to win the first-ever esports gold medal in Southeast Asia.