VIENTIANE, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- Laos will organize various petanque tournaments in 2017 to develop young players' skills and identify talents for the national team to compete at the regional and international events.
More than 100 male and female petanque players from many clubs in Laos will have an opportunity to test their skills at the ninth Prime Minister's Cup petanque tournament in capital Vientiane on March 29-31, reported Lao state-run media Vientiane Times on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, the National Assembly President's Cup is slated to run from June 1 to 3 in Lao northern Bokeo province and the Minister of Education and Sports' Cup in Vientiane is scheduled to be held on Aug. 4-5.
The competitions aim at developing petanque across the country, with many provinces currently preparing their skillful petanque players to compete at the 11th National Games in 2018.
During the tournaments, Lao petanque federation will select the best players at secondary school level to join the national junior team, which will compete at the ASEAN School Games in Singapore this July.
At the same time, the best male and female players will also be chosen to join the national petanque teams at the 29th SEA Games in Malaysia this August, at the World Petanque Championship for women's teams and junior male players in China during October. Players will also be selected for the Asian Petanque Championships in Vientiane in November.
The Lao petanque team successfully held onto its top ranking at the third ASEAN Petanque Championships on home soil last August after winning five gold, six silver and seven bronze medals from 12 petanque events.
However, the Lao team only won a silver medal in the petanque mixed doubles event at the Asian Beach Games in Vietnam last year.
At the 28th SEA Games in Singapore in 2015, Laos won bronze medals in the mixed doubles and women's team events, while at the 27th SEA Games in Myanmar in 2013, Laos won four gold, one silver and three bronze medals. Enditem