The struggle continues for the national judo squad as Dylwynn Gimena and Carl Dave Aseneta faced disappointment in the 19th Asian Games at the Xiaoshan Linpu Gymnasium in Hangzhou on Tuesday.
The 27-year-old Gimena fell victim to Khuslen Otgonbayar of Mongolia via ippon in the Round of 16 of the women’s -78-kilogram class.
Meanwhile, the 26-year-old Aseneta surrendered to Won Jonghoon of South Korea, also via ippon, in the Round of 16 of the men’s -100-kg event.
As a result, the national squad experienced a shutout in individual events, as none of its athletes managed to advance beyond the quarterfinals.
Their brightest hope, former Asian Games silver medalist Kiyomi Watanabe, started strong by defeating her Vietnamese opponent in the Round of 16 but fell prey to the Japanese top seed in the quarterfinals of the women’s -63-kg category.
The secretary general of the Philippine Judo Federation, Carter, remarked that their athletes were prepared but simply didn’t have luck on their side. He said, “They were ready to compete, but luck didn’t favor us,” referring to his wards who were supported by the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee.
Also returning home without individual medals are Leah Jhane Lopez (women’s -48-kg), Shugen Nakano (men’s -66-kg), Rena Furukawa (women’s 57-kg), John Viron Ferrer (men’s -80-kg), Ryoko Salinas (women’s -70-kg), and Kyodo Nakano (men’s -73-kg).
Nevertheless, the Filipinos still have a chance to finish strong as they compete in the mixed team event on the final day of competition on Wednesday.