2019 Southeast Asian Games

Enlarge New Clark City Athletics Stadium Philippine Arena

2019 Southeast Asian Games
2019 Southeast Asian Games (30th SEA Games).svg
Host cityVarious
(See below)
Motto"We Win as One"[1]
Nations participating11
Athletes participating5,630
Events530 in 56 sports (63 disciplines)
Opening ceremony30 November
Closing ceremony11 December
Officially opened byRodrigo Duterte
President of the Philippines
Officially closed bySalvador Medialdea
Executive Secretary of the Philippines[2]
Athlete's OathFrancesca Altomonte
Judge's OathDaren Vitug
Torch lighterManny Pacquiao
Nesthy Petecio
Main venuePhilippine Arena
(opening ceremony)
New Clark City Athletics Stadium (closing ceremony)

The 2019 Southeast Asian Games, officially known as the 30th Southeast Asian Games, or 2019 SEA Games and commonly known as Philippines 2019, was the 30th edition of the Southeast Asian Games, a biennial regional multi-sport event which was held in the Philippines from 30 November to 11 December 2019. However, due to a narrow calendar, some sports started before the opening ceremony as early as 24 November.[3]

This edition was marked by the first major decentralisation in the history of the Games, with competition venues spread in 23 cities across the country and divided into four clusters; all were located on the island of Luzon (Metro Manila, Clark, Subic/Olongapo, and a fourth cluster consisting of standalone venues in Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, and La Union). This was the Philippines' fourth time to host the games, and its first since 2005. Previously, it had also hosted the 1981 and 1991 editions of the games. This edition was most notable for being the first edition to include esports, obstacle course race, kurash, sambo, underwater hockey, breaking, surfing, modern pentathlon, jiu-jitsu, kickboxing, and skateboarding; as well as having the highest number of sports in the history of the games, at a total of 56.

The hosting rights were originally awarded to Brunei in 2012,[4] but the country pulled out days before the 2015 Southeast Asian Games due to "financial and logistical reasons."[5]

The Philippines was previously slated to host 2023 Southeast Asian Games but, in July 2015, it agreed to host the Games after Brunei's withdrawal (with Cambodia taking its place for 2023). However, the Philippines' hosting was left uncertain following the withdrawal of government support two years later as it planned to use the funds intended for the games for the rehabilitation of Marawi after being occupied by ISIS supporters. Thailand and Indonesia offered to host the games with the latter planning to reuse the venues used for the 2018 Asian Games.[6] However, by 16 August 2017, the Philippine government announced the reversal of the withdrawal.[7]

The host country, Philippines, emerged in the medal tally as the overall champion for the first time in 14 years, breaking its own medal count record in 2005, followed by Vietnam and Thailand. Several games and national records were broken during the games. Amidst numerous controversies and problems, the games were deemed generally successful with the rising standard of competition amongst the Southeast Asian nations; with its hosting being lauded by the Olympic Council of Asia for its facilities and hospitality. The Philippines is bidding to host the 2030 Asian Games, but was unable to submit the bid by the dateline.[8][9]

Quah Zheng Wen of Singapore was awarded the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award for male athletes, having won six golds and two silvers, while Nguyễn Thị Ánh Viên of Vietnam, with the same medal tally, was accorded MVP honours for female athletes.[10] The fairplay award is awarded to Roger Casugay for saving a fellow competitor's life.[11]

Host selection

As per SEA Games traditions, hosting duties are rotated among the SEA Games Federation (SEAGF) member countries. Each country is assigned a host the event in a in a predetermined year, but the country could be chose to withdrawn or not that edition.[12]

In July 2012, the SEAGF meeting in Myanmar confirmed that Malaysia would host the regional biennial event in 2017, should there be no other country willing to bid for the games.[13] Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) secretary general Sieh Kok Chi, who attended the meeting, said that Myanmar would host the Games in 2013, followed by Singapore in 2015 and Brunei in 2017. However, the sultanate gave up hosting the Games in 2017, in exchange for having more time to organise the 2019 edition. Brunei hosted the Games only once in 1999 and planned to upgrade its sports facilities and build a new national stadium in Salambigar to accommodate the Games.[4][14] However, on 4 June 2015, Brunei withdrew its hosting rights at the meeting in Singapore after the said country's Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports had failed to give support for the Games due to the lack of sporting facilities, accommodation, and preparation of their athletes.[5][15]


Provincial Sports Coordinator and Assistant Provincial Administrator Giovanni Gulanes reveals Davao del Norte's bid to host the 2019 Southeast Asian Games at the Kapihan sa Kapitolyo. July 2016.

With Brunei's withdrawal, the Philippines had expressed its interest to host the Games[16][17][18] Vietnam, the 2021 Southeast Asian Games host, was also offered to host this edition, but declined.[19] On 10 July 2015, the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) announced that the Philippines will be hosting the Games.[20] Davao City and Manila were touted as the top candidates for the main host city of the Games.[21] Cebu City[22] and Albay[23] also expressed interest in hosting some events.

On 21 July 2017, The Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) addressed the POC that it is withdrawing its support for the Philippine hosting of the 2019 Games, saying that government decided to reallocate funds meant for hosting to the rehabilitation efforts of Marawi, which was left devastated following the Battle of Marawi[21][24] and it was later reported that the POC's insistence on handling all matters of the hosting; finance, security and the conduct of the Games as it did for the 2005 Southeast Asian Games led to the PSC's withdrawal of support.[25]

However, on 16 August, the Philippines, through the then-POC president Peping Cojuangco, confirmed that the country will be hosting the 2019 SEA Games, after Cojuangco wrote to President Rodrigo Duterte and appealed for reconsideration.[26]

Cojuangco has stated that the Games would be held in the Central Luzon area, particularly in the provinces of Bulacan, Pampanga, and Zambales. He added that the Philippine Arena in the municipality of Bocaue in Bulacan province would "most likely" be used in the Games.[27] In January 2018, during the groundbreaking of the New Clark City Sports Hub (then known as the Philippine Sports City), it was announced that the organisers will attempt to hold all events of the games outside of Manila with New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac, Subic, and Bulacan as main host localities.[28]

Handover ceremony

During the closing ceremony of the 2017 SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur, the symbolic SEA Games Federation council flag was handed over by outgoing Malaysian Olympic Committee president HRH Tunku Tan Sri Imran to then-Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Jose "Peping" Cojuangco, who in turn passed the flag to then-Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, who will be the Chairman of organising committee for 2019 games.[29] In contrast of other closing ceremonies held throughout the SEA Games, only a discrete video promoting tourism in the Philippines was presented instead of a grand presentation for the next host country. One of the reasons for this is that the Philippine Olympic Committee decided to call off the performance which is said to be costly at PhP8 million. Another reason is to give focus on the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia).[30][31]

Development and preparations

Alan Peter Cayetano served as chairman of the organising committee of the Games.

Unlike the 2005 games, the 2019 SEA Games adopted a different organising structure for the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC). According to Philippine Sports Commission chairman William Ramirez, then-Foreign Secretary (now House Speaker) Alan Peter Cayetano would be appointed as the organising committee chairman, instead of the Philippine Olympic Committee president who presumed the role in 2005.[32] Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri was initially the head of the organising committee before he was replaced by Cayetano.[33]

At least three meetings were held for the preparation of the games. The first meeting was held in Shangri-la at the Fort last 16 to 17 May 2018. Another meeting was held in 23 and 24 November 2018.[34]

Officials of National Sports Associations of the Philippines were designated as competition managers and were tasked to deal with local arrangements concerning their sport including logistics, venue and equipment.[35]


The budget for the games is at least ₱7.5 billion. ₱6 billion were provided by the government while the rest were secured by PHISGOC from sponsorship agreements. The government funds were allocated to the Philippine Sports Commission with ₱5 billion from the funds approved by the Philippine Congress and the remainder derived from augmentation fund approved by President Rodrigo Duterte.[36] Duterte approved the additional funds by May 2019.[37]


The organisers entered negotiations with SM Tickets for ticketing systems. All tickets for all events were originally planned to cost a fee, with sports determined to be less popular by the organisers, to have a minimal fee.[38] On 3 October 2019, tickets for the opening ceremony and select events were made on available on all SM Tickets branches and on online.[39] However, days leading to the opening ceremony, there were clamours to make the tickets free to the general public. Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas President Monico Puentevella asked President Rodrigo Duterte to make the tickets free. The Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines made the same appeal.[40] Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo suggested the organisers to give the tickets free or charge tickets at a discounted price for students.[41]

On 29 November 2019, upon instructions of President Duterte, tickets were made available for free for all sporting events, except basketball, football and volleyball, which were sold out.[42] Tickets were also made available for free for the closing ceremony, with organisers giving 10,000 tickets to SM Tickets for distribution and thousands of other tickets to local government units.[43]


Organisers are coordinating with the Department of Transportation regarding logistics for the games including the possible closure of the North Luzon Expressway to the public for 12 hours leading to the opening ceremony.[44]

Vehicles, including 362 public busses, 162 sedans and 100 VIP cars, are planned to be bought and 268 vans are to be acquired via renting for use for the regional games.[44]

Also, three self-driving electric vehicles will be provided by American firm Connected Autonomous Shared Transportation (COAST) for transportation of passengers in New Clark City at no cost to the government.[45]


The organisers of the games launched a volunteer program in April 2019 in Taguig to aid the organisation of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games with the target of volunteers initially set to 12,000.[46] Around 9,000 individuals were recruited among those 20,686 people who expressed interest to join the volunteering program, 14,683 of which applied through official online portals. 2,960 applicants were foreigners while 6,003 were elected by educational institutions. The following is the approximate allocation of volunteers per cluster: 2,250 in the Clark cluster, 1,980, in the Subic cluster, 3,150 in Metro Manila, and 1,620 in other venues not part of the first three clusters.[47]


The official medals for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games was designed by Filipino metal sculptor Daniel dela Cruz, who also designed the SEA Games torch, played up elements from the Philippines. On the medal's front, above the SEA Games logo is a sail or "layag" typically used by Filipino boats. Encircling the logo are sea waves signifying the Philippine archipelago. At the back is a rendering of the sports facilities at the New Clark City, site of the SEA Games, which was incorporated using high density etching. Symbols of the various sports are embedded using laser etching.[48][49]

The gold medal is made of 24-karat gold plated material and its wave design in front is made of rhodium via bi-plating. The bronze medal was made "rose gold" in color instead of the traditional brown hue. The ribbon used to hold the medal features a double-sided design; one side features the colours associated with the Southeast Asian Games and the other is decorated with traditional Filipino weave patterns.[48] They were accompanied by a wooden carrying box, while medalists also received flower bouquets, Pami and Philippine Airlines aircraft stuffed toys.


The design of the official torch for the games was designed by Filipino metal sculptor Daniel dela Cruz[50] The torch was inspired from the sampaguita (Jasminum sambac) the Philippines' national flower and the hammered portions of the object represents the rays of the Philippine flag's sun.[49] According to the organisers, the sun symbolises "unity, sovereignty, social equality, and independence" aside from sharing the same symbolism of the sun of the Philippine flag. The torch weighs about 1.5 kilograms, not too heavy for the torch bearer.[51] The torch was officially unveiled on 23 August 2019 at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay during the 100-day countdown to the games.[50]

Torch relay

The Cebu leg of the torch run for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, 16 November 2019.

Preceding the torch run in the Philippines[51] was the ceremonial lighting of the lantern at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur on 3 October 2019. During the ceremony, Malaysian authorities handed the torch to the Philippine authorities.[52][53] During the ceremony, the flame was placed on a special lantern and was brought to Davao City to start the domestic part of the relay.[54]

The Philippine part of the relay, started in front of SM Lanang in Davao City on 30 October 2019.[55] The second leg of the run, participated by 6,500 runners was held at Cebu South Coastal Road in Cebu City on 16 November 2019.[56] The final leg was held on 23 November 2019 at the Bayanihan Park in Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga.[57]

2019 Southeast Asian Games torch run route.


The cauldron is a metal structure that stands at 12.5 metres (41 ft), built outside the New Clark City Athletics Stadium in Capas, Tarlac and it was lit on 30 November by the boxers Manny Pacquiao and Nesthy Petecio during the opening ceremony.[58] The inside is a hollow space filled with gravel, Inside the cauldron, there is an open space, which is filled with gravel, being supported by several metal structures on each side of the structure.. According to the PHISGOC, estimated costs for the construction and maintenance of the cauldron are estimated in ₱47 million.[59]

The cauldron was designed by National Artist for Architecture, Francisco Mañosa, which was his last project prior to his death.[60]


2019 Southeast Asian Games is located in Luzon
BLT (Batangas and Tagaytay)
BLT (Batangas and Tagaytay)
BLT (La Union)
BLT (La Union)
Four main hubs or clusters of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. The fourth cluster was designated as "Other Areas" which includes venues that are not part of either Manila, Subic, or Clark clusters.

There were four designated clusters or hubs for the sporting events of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games namely Clark, Subic, Metro Manila, and "Other Areas".[61] Previously the fourth cluster was reportedly known as the BLT (Batangas, La Union, and Tagaytay) Cluster[62] The main hub is Clark in the sports complex at the National Government Administrative Center, New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac.[63] The secondary venue will be Subic[64] while the tertiary venue will be Metro Manila and the other nearby areas.[65]

The opening ceremony was held at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan[66] while the closing ceremony was held at the New Clark City Athletics Stadium.[67]

The Philippine Sports Commission confirmed that Manila would host boxing, basketball, and volleyball events while Subic would host water sport events.[68]

The construction of the NOC (National Olympic Committee) mansions and villas for accommodating of the delegates from the competing countries has been proposed to be built in New Clark City. Each mansion would have 15 to 17 rooms each.[69]

Competition venues

Clark cluster

City/Municipality Venue Sports
Angeles AUF Gymnasium Arnis, Sambo, Wrestling[70][71]
DECA Clark Wakepark Wakeboarding, Waterskiing[71][72]
Mabalacat Clark Parade Grounds Archery,[72] Rugby sevens[71][73]
Clark Friendship Gate Lawn Bowls[71][72]
Royce Hotel and Casino Dancesports,[71][72] Petanque[74]
Clark International Sports Complex Baseball, Softball[71][72]
San Fernando LausGroup Event Centre Judo, Jujitsu, Kurash[71][72]
Capas New Clark City Athletics Stadium Athletics[71][72]
New Clark City Aquatic Center Aquatics (Diving, Swimming, Water Polo)[71][72]
Tarlac City Luisita Golf and Country Club Golf[71][72]

Metro Manila cluster

City/Municipality Venue Sports
Makati Manila Polo Club Squash[75]
Mandaluyong SM Megamall Ice Rink Speed Skating, Figure Skating[70][71]
Starmall EDSA-Shaw Bowling[71]
Manila Manila Hotel Tent Billiards[70][71]
Ninoy Aquino Stadium Taekwondo, Weightlifting[76]
Rizal Memorial Stadium Football (Men's)[67][71]
Rizal Memorial Sports Complex – Tennis Center Tennis, Soft tennis[71][77]
Rizal Memorial Coliseum Gymnastics (Aerobic, Artistic, Rhythmic)[76]
Muntinlupa Filinvest City Obstacle Course[78]
Muntinlupa Sports Center Badminton[79]
Pasay PICC Forum Boxing[70]
Cuneta Astrodome Kickboxing[71]
Mall of Asia Arena Basketball[67][71]
SM Mall of Asia Skating Rink Ice hockey[71][72]
World Trade Center Fencing, Karatedo, Wushu[71][72]
Pasig PhilSports Arena Indoor Volleyball[80][76]
Quezon City UP Diliman Gymnasium Floorball
San Juan Filoil Flying V Centre 3x3 Basketball,[72] Esports[70][71]
Taguig Philippine Marine Shooting Range Shooting[71][72]

Subic cluster

The Subic Bay Yacht Club hosted sailing event.
City/Municipality Venue Sports
Olongapo Lighthouse Marina Windsurfing[71][72]
Malaawan Park Canoe/kayak, Traditional boat race, Dragon boat racing[70][71]
Subic Bay Tennis Court Beach volleyball, Beach handball[71][72]
Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention Center Muay Thai, Pencak Silat, Table tennis[71][72]
Subic Bay Yacht Club Sailing[71][72]
Subic Gymnasium Sepak takraw[71][72]
Subic/Olongapo Subic Bay Boardwalk Aquatics (Open Water Swimming–10 km), Duathlon, Triathlon, Modern Pentathlon[71][72]
Travelers Hotel Chess[70][71]
Kamana Sanctuary, Triboa Bay Rowing[71]

Other areas

City/Municipality (Province) Venue Sports
Calatagan (Batangas) Miguel Romero Field[81] Polo[71][81]
Iñigo Zobel Field
Laurel (Batangas) Tatlong Bungo, Brgy. Niyugan Cycling (Mountain)
Imus (Cavite) Vermosa Sports Hub Underwater hockey[71][82]
Imus Grandstand and Track Oval Football
Maragondon (Cavite) Seaside Race Track Skateboarding (downhill)[83]
Tagaytay (Cavite) Tagaytay International Convention Center Cycling (BMX, Road), Skateboarding[71][72]
Tagaytay Extreme Sports Complex Skateboarding[71][72]
Biñan (Laguna) Biñan Football Stadium Football (Women's and Men's)[71][84]
Los Baños (Laguna) Centro Mall Floorball, Indoor hockey[71][85][86]
Santa Rosa (Laguna) Sta. Rosa Sports Complex Netball[71][82]
San Juan (La Union)[87] Monalisa Point Surfing[71][88]

Non-competition venues

Cluster City/Municipality Venue Events/Designation
Clark Angeles Bayanihan Park Countdown ceremony and launch
Clark International Airport Port of Entry
Parade Grounds Fan Zone
Capas NCC Athletics Stadium Closing ceremony
Athletes Village Official residence of the aquatics and athletics athletes
Mabalacat ASEAN Convention Center International Broadcast Center, Main Press Center[89]
Other areas Bocaue (Bulacan) Philippine Arena Opening ceremony
Capas (Tarlac) New Clark City Athletics Stadium Closing Ceremony


Official launch and branding

Officials lead the launch of the one-year countdown for the Games at the Bayanihan Park held on 30 November 2018

The official launch and countdown ceremony of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games was made at the Bayanihan Park at the Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga on 30 November 2018[90] which was attended by representatives of the 11 participating countries of the Games. At the ceremony the logo and theme of the Games were officially unveiled.[91] A 15 m (49 ft) structure consisting of 11 rings representing the 11 countries was also lit up as part of the countdown ceremony.[91] The mascot was shortly confirmed as official outside the countdown ceremony rites.[92]


"We Win as One", the official motto of the 2019 games.

The official motto of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games as well as its theme is "We Win as One."[62]

A preview of the logo of the 2019 SEA Games was earlier presented in front of the Olympic Council of Asia on 20 August 2018 in Jakarta, Indonesia during the 2018 Asian Games. The official logo depicts 11 rings from the logo of the Southeast Asian Games Federation forming the shape of the Philippines and coloured with the red, blue, dark blue, yellow, and green.[93] It was made official during the launching ceremony in Bayanihan Park on 30 November 2018. The logo received criticism for an apparent lack of creativity and design interest.


Pami, the official mascot of the games.

The games' mascot is dubbed as Pami, with their name derived from the "pamilya", the Filipino word for "family". According to 2019 SEA Games executive director Ramon Suzara, the mascot represents every nation, every athlete, every person coming together that support each other at the games. The mascot with a joyful character has been described to have been made from squishy spherical balls.[94] Just like the logo and theme, it was also previewed during the meeting in Jakarta, Indonesia. It was made official during the countdown ceremony in Bayanihan Park.

Theme songs

Ryan Cayabyab composed the official theme song of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games,[60] which shares the name of the games' official slogan "We Win As One". Floy Quintos wrote the lyrics for the song, which was officially launched on 11 July 2019.[95] Lea Salonga performed for the official release of theme song.[96] The theme song and music video for "We Win as One" was formally released on 3 September 2019 at the Resorts World Manila.[97][98] The music video which was shot at the New Clark City Sports Hub was directed by Shem Hampac and was produced by Equinox Manila.[99]

Cayabyab originally made the composition of the song, with the expectation that 11 singers would do the official performance. The song was revised, in order to be more suitable for a solo performance, after Lea Salonga was tapped to do the performance.[100] Cayabyab and Jimmy Antiporda were the ones responsible for the arrangement of the song.[101]

Sarah Geronimo released "Who We Are", a legacy song for the workforce and volunteers of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. The song was eventually played in several victory ceremonies with Filipino medalists. The music video was shot on several venues of the games.[citation needed]

Arnel Pineda and Filipino band KO Jones also released "Rock the SEA Games", which was also played during several SEA Games competitions, and was performed during the closing ceremonies on 11 December 2019.[citation needed]

In March 2020, "We Win as One" was remixed as We Heal As One in response to the 2020 coronavirus pandemic in the Philippines. Ryan Cayabyab also composed the song with new lyrics by Floy Quintos. The song was performed by various Filipino singers.[102]

Official attire

Clothing for official use were designed for the games various use. The presenters of the games' victory ceremonies would be wearing attire inspired from Filipino traditional clothing namely the Balintawak dress, Barong Tagalog, and Baro't Saya. Color coded polo shirt and jacket were devised: For Southeast Asian Games Federation officials it was blue, for technical officials, green, for volunteers, red, and Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) officials, navy blue. Business uniforms made by fashion designer Rajo Laurel will also be used. Laurel made two sets of uniform for women (black and white sets) and three sets for men (one black set and two white sets).[49]

The Barong Tagalog was used as the official uniform for Team Philippines' parade in the 2019 SEA Games Opening Ceremony. The official uniform was designed by Francis Libiran, while the Filipino athletes' official training apparel is sponsored by Asics.[103]


There were three tiers of sponsorship for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, depending on the amount of funds a company contributes to the games; Preferred sponsors contributed ₱500,000, Gold sponsors contributed ₱2,000,000 and Platinum sponsors contributed ₱3,000,000.[87] Philippine Airlines provided the air transport for the delegates of the games.[104] Singapore-based Razer Inc. will be involved in the organisation of the Esports events.[105]

Six companies have sealed their partnership agreements with PHISGOC during the sponsorship signing ceremonies on 13 February 2019. Atos, an international company which is also the IT Partner of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, is designated as the official games management system provider.[106] France-based GL Events provided the overlays and temporary structures of the 39 sporting venues to be used for the 2019 SEA Games.[106] Grand Sport, a sports apparel company from Thailand, is the official provider of the uniforms for the workforce, volunteers and technical officials.[106] The official kits of the national athletes of the host country will be provided by ASICS.[106] Mikasa, Marathon, and Molten are the providers of the official game balls and sporting equipment of the games, all brought in by Sonak Corporation.[106] PHISGOC appointed MediaPro Asia as the official exclusive production, media rights, marketing and sponsorship agent of the games.[107]

Autonomous vehicle (AV) service from United States-based COAST Autonomous was used to serve athletes and officials between the athletes' village, aquatic center and athletics stadium in New Clark City.[108] This will be the first ever implementation of an AV service in a major sporting event.[108]

SM Lifestyle, Inc., an arm of SM Prime Holdings, was named the regional games' official venue partner with the venue for men's basketball and ice hockey to be held in facilities managed by the SM Group.[109]

Pennsylvania-based NEP Group was the official host broadcaster of the games which sold full and partial broadcasting rights to other broadcasters.[110] Skyworth was named as the official television partner in the games. They covered events prior to the competition proper including the torch relays in the Philippines and Malaysia, as well as the Game Hub and Fan Zones. The platinum-tier sponsorship was helped secured by Singapore firm Mediapro Asia.[111]

Mastercard is the main sponsor of the games' official mobile app which would allow users to view the schedule and results as well purchase tickets and food in the venue.[112]

The organisers secured insurance for the games' athletes and officials from Standard Insurance Co. Inc. which covered a period of 15 October – 15 December 2019 with each beneficiary having a coverage of ₱300 thousand. The insurance plan covers death or any accident-related injuries incurred both during the games and in training, and losses due to sabotage and terrorist acts. Standard Insurance has EMA-Global as its medical service provider partner.[113]

2019 Southeast Asian Games sponsors[114]
Tier/Sponsorship Sponsoring firms
Platinum Ajinomoto,[115][116] PAGCOR,[117] Skyworth, CooCaa,[117] Philippine Airlines,[87][114] Pinaco,[118] Morris Garages, Phoenix Petroleum,[119] Megaworld Corporation,[120] Resorts World Manila[120]
Gold Pocari Sweat,[121] Nestlé (Milo),[117] Mastercard,[112] NLEX-SCTEX, Razer, Coca-Cola, PLDT-Smart[122]
Preferred Partners ASICS, GL Events,[114] Grand Sport,[114] BMW Philippines,[117] SM Lifestyle, Inc.,[117] FBT[122]
Prestige Partners[114] Molten Corporation, Mikasa Sports, Marathon, Filinvest City, GSIS[120]
Official Banking Partners China Bank, Philippine National Bank[119]
Official Convenience Store FamilyMart[119]
Official Commemorative Watch Ibarra Manila[122]
Official Insurance Partner Standard Insurance[122]
Official Media Partners[114] Inquirer Group of Companies,[117] CNN Philippines,[123] Digital Out of Home (DOOH), United Neon Media Group,[123] Bombo Radyo Philippines, Radio Mindanao Network, Rakuten Viber[122]
Official Host Broadcaster[114] NEP[110]

The Games

Opening ceremony

The Philippine Arena in Bocaue hosted the opening ceremony.

The Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan, the world's largest indoor arena, hosted the opening ceremony of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.[66][124] In the opening ceremony, Manny Pacquiao and Nesthy Petecio lit the cauldron in New Clark City. The lighting of the cauldron was not live and pre-recorded. It was initially planned to have conducted live but in anticipation of Typhoon Kammuri (Tisoy), a contingency has to be made.[125] Although a separate cauldron was not built near the arena they had fireworks. Carlos Yulo was designated as the torch bearer and light the cauldron.[126][127]

The opening ceremony was reportedly inspired from the opening ceremonies of the 2017 Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Originally, the organisers have announced plans to conduct a digital lighting of the flame during the event, but added they have a backup plan for a "normal, traditional opening ceremony".[69] The american entertainment company FiveCurrents which produced the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2002 Winter Olympics, the 2007 Pan American Games and 2012 Summer Olympics, was hired to advise the local companies; Video Sonic and Stage Craft.[87][128]

Filipino-American artist apl.de.ap member of The Black Eyed Peas, performed at the opening ceremony. Collaborating with Ryan Cayabyab, he performed a remix of his troupe's song rendered in Filipino traditional instruments and orchestral accompaniment.[129][130] Previously the organisers negotiated with another Filipino-American artist, Bruno Mars, to do the same, but the negotiations did not advance .[131] In August 2019, organisers but the negotiations did not advance. There were also expectations for performances by Filipino diva Lea Salonga and Journey lead singer Arnel Pineda, but they did not advance either.[44] Local expectations were dashed on 25 November when Salonga announced that due to an agenda conflict with the local production of the musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.[132]

Closing ceremony

The Athletics Stadium in New Clark City hosted the closing ceremony.

The closing ceremony was held in the athletics stadium in New Clark City.[67] The Black Eyed Peas as a group performed in the closing ceremony.[129]

Arnel Pineda and Filipino band KO Jones are also one of the performers.

Participating nations

All 11 members of Southeast Asian Games Federation (SEAGF) are expected to take part in the 2019 SEA Games. Below is a list of all the participating NOCs.


A record of 530 events in 56 sports have been approved to be contested at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games making this edition the largest Southeast Asian Games in terms of the number of sports and events contested.[133] An initial list of 32 sports to be contested at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games was agreed upon following the two-day SEA Games Federation Council Meeting from 16 to 17 May 2018 at the Shangri-La at the Fort in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, Metro Manila.[134] Badminton was initially excluded by the hosts from the initial list, but was reinstated following the objections of the National Olympic Committees of Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Singapore, and Thailand.[135] Vovinam was later dropped from the finalised list of sports released by the organisers in mid-December 2018[136] and polo was included in January 2019.[81]

The following is a list of sports to be contested at the games including partial figures for the number of events in each sport:[136][79]

In addition, the following will be demonstrations events:[137]

The proposal to include additional sports was allowed through suggestions of the different NOCs until 13 June 2018.[34] There was reportedly a provision that a proposed sport must be backed by at least four nations to be instated to the list.[138] Among the sports proposed to be included in the final list are e-sports, netball, obstacle course, sambo, skateboarding, shuttlecock, surfing, water skiing, sports rock climbing, and aero sports[134] Malaysia planned to propose the inclusion of tennis, ice skating and martial arts which featured in the previous edition[135] while Cambodia lobbied for the inclusion of tennis, petanque, and vovinam.[138]

On 30 September 2018 during a meeting at the SEA Games Council Federation headquarters in Bangkok. The NOCs of Southeast Asia approved 56 sports in total to be contested in the Games; all sports were proposed by the NOC of the host nation except the disciplines of floorball, vovinam, and indoor hockey which were lobbied for by the other NOCs.[133] Arnis, a Filipino martial art, was last featured as a demonstration sport in the 2005 edition. Arnis will be a regular sport in the 2019 games, and its national sport association lobbied for 20 events for the discipline (16 in combat; 4 in anyo (lit. 'form'))[139] The Philippines will introduce 3x3 basketball for the first time in the history of the games.[140]

Upon the approval of the 56 proposed sports, it was reported that no additional sports was to be added.[133] However the Philippine Olympic Committee later announced that it would propose the addition of beach handball and beach netball after consultations with the sports' respective national associations to the final list of sports to be contested in the games to be agreed upon on November.[141] Following a meeting of the Southeast Asian Games Federation Council from 23 to 24 November 2018, the approval of the 56 proposed sports were finalised with 530 events planned to be contested. The number of events was finalised by mid-December 2018.[62]


OC Opening ceremony Event competitions 1 Gold medal events CC Closing ceremony
November December Events
Ceremonies OC CC N/A
Aquatics Diving 2 2 45
Open Water 1
Swimming 7 6 6 7 6 6
Water Polo 2
Archery 5 5 10
Arnis 8 8 4 20
Athletics 2 8 16 11 11 48
Badminton 1 1 5 7
Baseball / Softball Baseball pictogram.svg Baseball 1 3
Softball pictogram.svg Softball 2
Basketball Basketball pictogram.svg 5x5 Basketball 2 4
3x3 basketball pictogram.svg 3x3 Basketball 2
Billiards 1 1 1 2 2 3 10
Bowling 2 2 1 2 2 9
Boxing 13 13
Canoeing Dragon boat pictogram.svg Traditional Boat Racing 3 3 13
Canoeing (flatwater) pictogram.svg Canoe / Kayak 4 3
Chess 2 1 2 5
Cycling 2 2 2 1 1 2 1 2 13
Dancesport 14 14
Esports 1 3 2 6
Fencing 2 2 2 2 2 2 12
Floorball 2 2
Football 1 1 2
Golf 2 2 4
Gymnastics 1 1 5 5 5 3 20
Beach handball 1 1
Indoor hockey 2 2
Ice hockey 1 1
Ice skating Figure skating pictogram.svg Figure skating 2 8
Short track speed skating pictogram.svg Short track 3 3
Jujitsu 6 5 11
Judo 2 6 6 2 16
Karate 4 5 4 13
Kickboxing 3 5 8
Kurash 5 5 10
Lawnbowls / Pétanque Lawn bowls pictogram.svg Lawn bowls 4 2 10
Petanque pictogram.svg Pétanque 2 2
Modern pentathlon 3 2 1 6
Muaythai 2 7 9
Netball 1 1
Obstacle racing 4 2 6
Pencak silat 3 1 5 9
Polo 1 1 2
Rowing 3 3 6
Rugby sevens 2 2
Sailing / Windsurfing Sailing 7 2 12
Windsurfing pictogram.svg Windsurfing 3
Sambo 4 3 7
Sepak takraw 2 1 1 1 1 6
Shooting 3 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 2 14
Skateboarding 2 2 4 8
Soft tennis 1 1 1 3
Squash 2 1 2 5
Surfing 4 4
Table tennis 2 2 4
Taekwondo 8 8 6 22
Tennis 2 3 5
Duathlon / Triathlon Duathlon 2 1 6
Triathlon pictogram.svg Triathlon 2 1
Underwater hockey 2 2 4
Volleyball Indoor 1 1 4
Volleyball (beach) pictogram.svg Beach 2
Wakeboarding / Waterski 5 5
Weightlifting 2 3 3 2 10
Wrestling 7 7 14
Wushu 3 2 11 16
Daily medal events N/A 46 37 37 36 40 43 67 89 86 48 1 530
Cumulative total N/A 46 83 120 156 196 239 306 395 481 529 530
November December

Source:[142] / Result SEA Games A / Result SEA Games B / Complete Schedule

Several events were rescheduled due to inclement weather (without surfing).

Medal table

The 2019 Southeast Asian Games has 530 events in 56 sports, resulting in 530 medal sets to be distributed. Other additional number of medal sets that will be distributed, will be announced before the awarding of different sports in the games respectively.

  *   Host nation (Philippines)

2019 Southeast Asian Games Medal Table
1 Philippines (PHI)*149117121387
2 Vietnam (VIE)9885105288
3 Thailand (THA)92103123318
4 Indonesia (INA)7284111267
5 Malaysia (MAS)555871184
6 Singapore (SGP)534668167
7 Myanmar (MYA)4185173
8 Cambodia (CAM)463646
9 Brunei (BRU)25613
10 Laos (LAO)152935
11 East Timor (TLS)0156
Totals (11 nations)5305287261784
Source: [1]



  *   Host nation (Philippines)

Country Official broadcaster/s Ref.
 Cambodia Hang Meas [143]
 Indonesia MNC Group, TVRI [144][145]
 Malaysia Radio Televisyen Malaysia, Astro [146][147]
 Philippines ABS-CBN, TV5 Network Inc. [148]
 Singapore Mediacorp [149]

Concerns and controversies

The 2019 Southeast Asian Games was marred with a series of controversies, ranging from corruption allegations, marketing, and logistics problems to the treatment of the delegations.[150]

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