Tabal surpasses Olympic standard for women's marathon, awaits Patafa endorsement
Mary Joy Tabal, pictured with Eduardo Buenavista, clipsed the Olympic standard in women’s marathon during a Canada race over the weekend. 

MARY Joy Tabal eclipsed the Olympic standard in women’s marathon during a Canada race over the weekend to qualify for the Rio Games. 

According to information given by Philippine track and field consultant Andrew Pirie, Tabal clocked two hours, 43 minutes, and 31 seconds in the Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon Canada — well beyond the Olympic standard of 2:45:00.

Tabal also set the new national record, breaking the previous mark of 2:41:21 owned by Jhoanne Banayag in the 2007 Southeast Asian Games.

Tabal, however, still needs to be endorsed by the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (Patafa) as she is currently not a member of the national team.

“She met the standard but it doesn’t mean that we will endorse her,” said Patafa president Philip Ella Juico. “She needs the endorsement of the NSA and by the Olympic Committee.”

Juico said Tabal resigned from the national team last year.

“She doesn’t want to be under our guidance. But we’ll see,” said Juico.

Nevertheless, Tabal became the second Filipino to surpass the Olympic standard in Rio after Eric Cray in the 400m hurdles.

Long jumper Marestella Torres-Sunang is also set to compete in her third Olympics after Patafa's request that she be given a universality place was confirmed.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @reubensports