Karate, silat take over
JAKARTA—The euphoria had yet to die down, only for the Philippines to fail to dodge the bullet it has been avoiding in the 18th Asian Games.
Team Philippines’ popular basketball team blew early command and got bombarded in the fourth period to lose to South Korea, 91-82, on Monday in the quarterfinals, a loss that not even two bronze medals in martial arts could make up for.
The Filipinos wasted an eight-point third quarter lead, lapsing into errors when it counted as they bowed out of the medal race and must win two matches to finish fifth.
“I take full responsibility,” coach Yeng Guiao told Filipino reporters after the defeat, which kept the Philippines winless against Korea in the Games since 1962.
The defeat came less than 24 hours after the Philippines celebrated its biggest day in the 45-nation sporting conclave, when the women’s golf team swept the individual and team gold headlined by Yuka Saso.
Pencak silat produced the country’s 11th bronze courtesy of Cherry Mae Regalado, who missed the silver by just a point in the form event of the women’s singles.
Another bronze from Junna Tsukii in the women’s 50-kilogram division of karate that upped the Philippine total to three golds and 12 bronze medals for 19th overall in the race being dominated by China, which has an 85-60-41 tally as of 8:30 p.m. (9:30 p.m. PH time).
Host Indonesia remained the best Southeast Asian side with a 21-14-27 tally, fourth overall and 15 rungs higher than the Philippines, which will host the SEA Games next year.
“I was truly confident going into the tournament,” said Regalado, who had 444 points, 23 points behind the gold medal-winning 467 of Puspa Arumsari of Indonesia. “It just didn’t work out for me.”
Regalado produced the third bronze from the pencak silat contingent after two came from the men’s division on Sunday courtesy of Jeffrey Loon and Dines Dumaan.
Tsukii churned out a 4-1 win over Thailand’s Raksachart Paweena in their bronze medal match, getting there after winning, 4-2, over Alajmi Hawraa of the United Arab Emirates in the repechage.
Boxing’s Carlo Paalam advanced after a 5-0 win over Tu Powei of Chinese Taipei in the preliminaries of men’s light fly.
In athletics, Eric Cray was way off the 400-m hurdles pace, finishing seventh in the eight-man finals which Qatar’s Samba Abderrahman ruled with an Asiad record time of 47.66 seconds. Cray clocked 51.53.
Marestella Sunang was ninth with an effort of 6.15 meters in long jump won by Vietnam’s Thi Thu Thao Biu (6.55).
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