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Cielo Honasan nails second gold; Chess delivers three golds



The Philippines leaned on three gold medals in chess as it raked in an eight-gold haul on Tuesday, to zoom to the fifth spot in the 9th ASEAN Paralympic Games at Hall 3 of the Malaysian International Trade and Exhibition Center in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

FIDE Master Sander Severino drew his sixth and final round match with Vietnam’s Nguyen Anh Tuan to claim the individual gold in standard play of the physically impaired with 5.5 points, half a point ahead of FM Maksum Firdaus of Indonesia.

Severino’s points — plus the 3.5 points of Henry Lopez, who halved the point with Vietnam’s Nguyen Van Quan — gave the nine points.

But the Philippines wound up with the better tiebreaker courtesy of the highest individual score, provided by Severino, to clinch the team crown.

The country’s flag-bearer Menandro Redor and Arman Subastre missed the gold but teamed up with Israel Peligro to snatch the team gold with 9.5 points, besting Indonesia, which relied on individual gold winner Gayu Satrio, by a full point.

Satrio and Redor, the country’s most bemedaled athlete in the 2015 Singapore edition, actually ended up tied for first with five points, but the former was the awarded the gold via win-over-the-other tiebreak after beating the latter in the fourth round.

There was some confusion before the awarding ceremony, however, after organizers initially declared Redor as champion because the tiebreaker applied was in a different manner than the originally agreed upon, which is the winner-over-the-other rule.

“If we are going to win, we should win fair and square so,” said chess team coach James Infiesto in Filipino.

Severino, a 32-year-old native of Silay City, Negros Occidental, who had muscular dystrophy when he was still a child, will be gunning for two more golds as the two-day rapid play starts on Wednesday.

“I hope we I could give our country more gold medals because everything we do here is for our countrymen,” said Severino, who already matched his two-gold haul in Singapore.

Cielo Honasan nails second gold

Over at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Cielo Honasan nailed the century dash gold in 13.96 to complete a sprint double after she topped the 200m Monday night.

Honasan, 15-year-old polio victim who runs with a longer left leg, will shoot for a sprint treble as he competes in the 400m on Wednesday.

Prudencia Panaligan also came through with a mint in the 100m for T52/53/54 with a clocking of 18.32, edging Thai Chainet Srithong (18.67) and Vietnamese Nguyen Thi Xuan Anh (18.78).

Gary Bejino blazes trail for Philippine tankers

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Gary Bejino ended a golden wait after two uneventful first two days for the Filipinos at the pool as he delivered the country’s first swimming gold in the 400m freestyle for S7 in 5:33.81, almost half a minute ahead of eventual silver medallist Kaweewat Sittichaiphonniti (6:02.26).

Roland Sabido contributed a silver in the 400m free for S9 in 5:15.66, behind winner Jendi Pangabean of Indonesia, who clocked in at 4:58.35.

Ernie Gawilan seized the 400m free gold for S8 and went for another one in 100m butterfly but ended up settling for a silver.

Gawilan, 26, was victorious in the 400m free as he timed in 4:57.49, beating Vietnam’s Dag Van Cong (5:56.09) and Thailand’s Phiphatphong Sianglam (5:59.94) but was no match to Malaysian Tien Yu James Wong’s 1:12.94 in the 100m fly where the former checked in at 1:19.86.

Arthus Bacay cops cycling’s first gold

Over at the Dataran Putrajaya track, Arthus Bucay copped cycling’s first gold by topping the men’s individual time trial for C5 with a time of 17:44.186, besting Malaysia’s Zuhairie Bin Ahmad Tarmzi and Indonesia’s Sufyan Saori, who took the silver and bronze in 19:11.953 and 19:38.150, respectively.

Bucay, a 36-year-old Marikina-based Paralympian, failed in his bid to win the mint a couple of times as he settled for a pair of silvers in the one-kilometer track and 4000 individual pursuit entering yesterday’s event.

He finally hit the jackpot on this one.

Godfrey Taberna, for his part, managed a bronze in the ITT for C4 as he clocked 18:47.586 behind Malaysian Mohd Najib Bin Turano’s 17:56.306 and Indonesian Muhammad Fadli Imammuddin’s 18:16.930.

By day’s end, the Philippines had improved to 11 golds on top of 12 silvers and 11 bronzes, and climbed from seventh the day before to fifth overall.



Philippine team exceeds expectations in AIMAG



Chef de mission Monsour Del Rosario hardly expected a deluge of medals in the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games held in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.

So it came as a big surprise when Filipino athletes produced far more than what Del Rosario had asked for.

“We succeeded and exceeded the country’s expectations in the AIMAG,” said Del Rosario, the Makati City congressman who also sits as secretary general of the Philippine Taekwondo Association.

The Philippines ended its 12-day stint with two gold, 14 silver, and 14 bronze medals in the biggest continental sportsfest next to the quadrennial Asian Games.

It overshadowed the one-gold, two-bronze performance of Filipino athletes in the previous AIMAG held in 2013 Incheon, South Korea.

“We didn’t make any bold projections and just believed that our athletes can accomplish it,” said Del Rosario, who — along with karatedo secretary general and deputy chef de mission Raymund Lee Reyes — took care of the 116 Filipino athletes who participated in 17 sports.

Jiu-jitsu grapplers Meggie Ochoa and Annie Ramirez captured the two golds worth PHP 2 million each from the Philippine Sports Commission, as provided for by Republic Act 10699 or the amended Sports Incentives Act.

Silver medalists led by Olympian Hidilyn Diaz; trackster Eric Cray; muay fighter Phillip Delarmino, cue aces Chezka Centeno, Rubilen Amit; bowler Kenneth Chua; and the dancesport tandem of German Enriquez and Danella Publico will earn P1 million each from the government.

The 62-nation Games, which included the Oceania region headed by Australia and New Zealand, ended with a lavish closing ceremony late Wednesday night at the 35,000-seater Ashgabat Olympic Stadium.

Completing the silver performers are poomsae specialists Rodolfo Reyes Jr. and Jocel Lyn Ninobla; the men’s rapid chess team under-23 of international masters Jan Emmanuel Garcia and Paulo Bersamina; and jiu-jitsu’s Marc Alexander Lim, Jenna Kaila Napolis, and Gian Dee.

Taekwondo jins Kirstie Elaine Alora, Francis Agojo, Kristopher Uy; and wrestlers Alvin Lobreguito and Jefferson Manatad wound up with bronze medals, as well as kurash grappler Al Rolan Llamas, lifter Kristel Macrohon, and cue master Carlo Biado.

Joining them are the women’s rapid team under-23 starring woman grandmaster Janelle Frayna and woman Fide master Shania Mae Mendoza, and the dancesport pair of Gerald Jamili and Cherry Parcon.

Story and Photo from PSC-POC Media Group

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Waltz dancers, Rubilen Amit secure silver



Dance instructors German Enriquez and Maria Danella Renee Publico secured a silver medal together with cue master Rubilen Amit on the penultimate day of competitions, Tuesday, at the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games.

Enriquez and Publico scored 30 points in the Viennese waltz event in dancesport, while Amit lost her gold-medal encounter with China’s Chen Siming, 7-5, in women’s 10-ball pool singles.

Japan’s Tomomi and Takeshi Yamamoto ruled the event with 32.291 points, and Macau’s Vong Weng Lam and Tam Ka Pan copped the bronze with 28.167 points.

Bowlers Krizziah Lyn Tabora, Liza Del Rosario, Marian Lara Posadas, and Marie Alexis Sy were also guaranteed of a silver after beating China in the women’s team of four semifinals over at the Bowling Center.

They rolled 780 points to overcome the 737 pinfalls of China’s quartet of Yang Liyan, Zhang Yuhong, Zhang Chunli and Peng Rui. The PH women’s bowling team faces South Korea’s Jung Dawun, Kim Moonjeong, Baek Seungja and Hong Hae Ni in the finals on Wednesday.

International masters Paulo Bersamina and Jan Emmanuel Garcia are likewise preparing for a gold-medal face-off against China’s Wei Yu and Xu Yinglun in the men’s rapid team under-23. They downed Maksat Atabayev and Yusup Atabayev of host Turkmenistan in the semifinals.

Amit immediately grabbed the lead after three sets but Chen, a former 10-ball world champion like the Filipino cue artist, managed to gain control on the seventh frame.

Chen gave up two more frames but wouldn’t be denied when the Chinese got a fantastic break in the 12th and final set to finish off Amit.

Overall, the Philippines is running 18th among 65 countries with two gold, 11 silver, and 12 bronze medals. More medals are expected from bowling, chess, and dancesport prior to the closing ceremony late Wednesday.

Woman grandmaster Janelle Mae Frayna and woman Fide master Shania Mae Mendoza will bring home a bronze medal after failing to hurdle Kazakhstan’s Zhansaya Abdumalik and Dinara Saduakassova in the semifinals of women’s rapid team under-23.

Ana Leonila Nualla and Sean Mischa Aranar missed out on a medal after placing fourth in the waltz finale and winding up fifth in the tango.

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Rubilen Amit continues to roll, makes it to the Final Four



Rubilen Amit advanced to the semifinals round following her 7-1 win over Iran’s Parisa Mangli in the quarterfinals of the women’s 10-Ball Pool singles in the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games (AIMAG), Monday at the Ashgabat Olympic Complex here.

Amit, 35, who hails from Mandaue City, Cebu, quickly grabbed a 5-0 advantage, before Mangli won the sixth rack off an her error.

That was the only game Mangli won, however, as Amit took the next two racks to win the race-to-seven encounter and secure a spot in the semifinals, where she will meet Taiwan’s Wei Tzu-Chien.

Wei edged Lim Yunmi of South Korea, 7-2, in the quarterfinals. The semifinal is scheduled in the afternoon. The other semifinal match will pit China’s Chen Siming and Taiwan’s Chou Chieh-Yu.

The 10-Ball World Championship winner in 2009 and 2013, Amit has assured herself of a bronze medal with her win, which matches her podium finish during the 2013 AIMAG in Incheon, South Korea.

“Hopefully maka-pasok sa finals, sa gold medal game para madagdagan yung collection ng Philippine Team ng ginto galling sa billiards. But it’s not going to be easy,” said Amit.

“Magaling din talaga yung Korean na makaka-harap natin sa semifinals. Kung makaka-lusot, magagaling din yung nasa kabilang bracket. So sana makuha natin.”

Amit’s win came a day after Warren Kiamco and Johann Chua fell to China’s LV Haotian and Liu Haitao, 9-4, in the men’s 9-Ball Pool Scotch doubles semifinal Sunday night.

Kiamco and Chua claimed the bronze medal.

With the latest medal from Kiamco and Chua, the country now has a medal haul of two gold medals courtesy of Jiu-Jitsu fighters Margarita “Meggie” Ochoa and Annie Ramirez, 10 silvers and 11 bronze medals.


Kickboxer Robin Catalan lost to Hamza Abughazleh of Jordan, 2-0, in the quarterfinals of the men’s low kick -51kg despite leading in the first two rounds of their three-round encounter.


Grandmasters Julio Catalino Sadorra and Eugene Torre finished 18th and 19th among 44 entries in men’s standard individual chess, while Woman Fide Master Shania Mae Mendoza ended up 17th in her event.


Wrestler Grace Loberanes missed out on a medal after Sheetal Tomar of India scored a 2-0 win in the repechage of women’s freestyle -48kg.

On Deck

The national team dancers will try to add to the medal count as action starts Monday in Dance Sports.

The pair of Gerald Jamili and Cherry Claire Parcon, the reigning Latin Jive pair champion, leads the country’s bid. The other Filipino participants are Ma. Daniella Renee Publico, German Enriquez, Sean Mischa Aranar, Ana Leonila Nualla, Michael Angelo Marquez and Stephanie Sabalo.

In bowling, the women’s and men’s teams are likewise competing in preliminary round at press time. Silver medal winner Kenneth Chua leads the men’s team, while veteran Maria Liza del Rosario heads the women’s squad.

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Cendy Asusano, Sander Severino pick up golden trebles



The Philippines rode on golden efforts by thrower Cendy Asusano, swimmer Ernie Gawilan, and the chess team spearheaded by Sander Severino to hike its total to 19 mints in the penultimate day of the 9th ASEAN Para Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Cendy Asusano snares third gold

Asusano, 27, registered a 5.50m to snare the shotput gold for F54, her third after she also won in javelin on Monday and discuss throw on Thursday.

Maritess Burce took her second bronze by finishing third with 4.85m.

The Donsol, Sorsogon-native thus made it to elite group of Filipino triple gold medalists alongside teenage sprint phenom Cielo Honasan.

Also at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Evaristo Carbonel added a silver in discus throw for F11 with a 26.06m, finishing behind Thai Boonsri Pichai with a 31.41m.

Juanito Mingarine leads Philippine 5 to wheelchair basketball bronze

Juanito Mingarine, who is Asusano’s boyfriend and father to their three-year-old daughter Chantal, helped the wheelchair basketball squad that defeated Myanmar, 49-41, for the 5-on-5 division bronze at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre.

Marcos Rabasto, Jr., Alfie Cabanog, Rene Macabenguil, and Marlon Nacita were the other members of that squad.

It was Mingarine’s second bronze as he, Rabasto, Macabenguil, Cleford Trocino, and John Rey Escalante survived Laos, 12-11, to pocket the 3-on-3 bronze the day before.

Ernie Gawilan cops gold in 200m individual medley

Gawilan struck gold in the 200m individual medley for SM8 in 2:50.13, ahead of Malaysia’s James Wong Tien Yu and Vietnam’s Dang Van Cong, who ended up with a silver and a bronze in 2:50.98 and 3:20.05, respectively.

It was Gawilan’s second mint on top of a silver and a bronze to help propel the valiant swim team, who is mentored by Tony Ong, to a 3-3-5 (gold-silver-bronze) haul.

After receiving his second gold, Gawilan, who hails from the mounains of Paguibato, Davao del Sur, said he’s happy to make the country proud.

Woodpusher Sander Severino scores golden treble after leading team rapid squad

Severino joined the company of Honasan and Asusano as he captured his third gold after his team of Henry Lopez and Felix Aguilera reigned supreme in the team rapid for the physically impaired, by amassing 9.5 points, a point ahead of Indonesia’s Maksum Firdaus, Azhar Panjaitan, and Sutikno.

Firdaus and Lopez wound up tied for first in the individual rapid event with 5.5 points each, but the former won in tiebreaks, 18.5-18, to steal the gold from the latter, who consoled himself with a silver.

Severino, the individual and team standard double-gold medal winner who finished with four points, consoled himself with a bronze with four points.

Lopez, a proud son of Davao City, would have sealed the gold had Aguilera pulled the rug from under Firdaus.

Surviving Firdaus’ sacrificial attack, Aguilera was on the verge of pulling off a shock win, but he missed the winning rook move and crumbled under deep time pressure to allow Firdaus to escape with a win and eventually the gold.

Chess thus wound up with four golds, two short of the country’s six-gold haul in Singapore.

Medal Tally

With a day to go, the Philippines now has 19 golds, which eclipsed the 16 the country plucked the last time out.

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