Azkals mainstays add more bite to Philippine Under-23 squad in SEA Games
Daisuke Sato and five other Azkals mainstays have been added to the Under-23 pool. Jaime Campos

SIX Azkals mainstays have been tapped to add more bite to the Philippine Under-23 standouts set to see action in the Southeast Asian Games in Singapore.

Amani Aguinaldo, Kenshiro Daniels, Mark Hartmann, Manny Ott, OJ Porteria, and Daisuke Sato are part of the 30-man pool composed of United Football League and collegiate stars who are vying for spots in the U-23 roster.

Young stars including Curt Dizon, Nick O’Donnell, who have previously suited up for the Azkals in friendlies and saw action in the AFC Under-23 Cup, are also in the pool that will be trimmed to 20 before the tournament.

[See At least 451 Filipinos competing in 34 sports in Singapore SEA Games]

The U23 Azkals are being coached by Australia’s Jim Fraser.

The Filipino booters are making a return to the biennial meet after failing to get the go-signal in the last edition of in Myanmar.

The last time the Philippines saw action, the squad failed to advance to the knockout stage after finishing at the bottom of its six-team group with just one win in five matches in the 2011 Indonesia Games.

The SEA Games is opening in June, but football matches will already be played late next month.

The 20-man lineup is the fifth largest player delegation the country will send after athletics (34), softball (34), basketball (24), volleyball (24) and rugby 7s (24).

The 30-man pool:

 Luis Cesar Abadia

Amani Manuel Aguinaldo

Ronnie Aguisanda

Nathaniel Andrew Alquiros

Arnel Amita

Fitch Johnson Daviz Arboleda

Florencio Badelic Jr.

Mark Anthony Besana

Jaime Vicenzo Cheng

Julian Mariano Clarino

Kenshiro Michael Daniels

Dominic Liam Del Rosario

Curt-Jordan Dizon

Neil Dorimon

Shirmar Felongco

Daniel Bernan Gadia

Joshua Jake Grommen

Mark Andrew Hartmann

John Christopher Kanayama

Nicholas Michael O’Donnell

Manuel Ott

Jose Elmer Porteria

Paolo Salenga

Francisco Jose Primo Santos

Daisuke Sato

Connor Reece Tacagni

Richard Talaroc Jr.

Kennedy Uzoka

Gerardo Valmayor III

Nathaniel Ace Villanueva


Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos