Lim doing homework for ‘last push’ to Tokyo
During her spare time, Jamie Lim checks out the videos of her possible opponents online in the coming Olympic qualification in Paris.
The Southeast Asian Games karate champion in the women’s +61kg has been carefully analyzing their fighting styles, aware that half of the battle will be resolved by fully knowing the enemy. “Aside from training hard, I’m studying my probable opponents really well. I watch their videos because they are athletes who travel a lot and compete in a lot of tournaments,” said Lim.
Only the top three competitors in her division during the Paris qualification on June 12 can grab a ticket to the Tokyo Olympics.
Irina Zaretska of Azerbaijan, the 2018 world champion, and Elena Quirici of Switzerland have booked slots in Tokyo as well as Iran’s Hamideh Abbasali, Turkey’s Meltem Hocaoglu and Ayumi Uekusa of host Japan.
According to Lim, her rivals in that weight category are top karatekas from China, Egypt, Kazakhstan and a number of European countries.
“Around 100 fighters for every weight class will be there (in the qualifier) and only the top three will go to the Olympics. That’s how difficult it is, but I believe I can do it,” said Lim.
Turkey camp awaits
“This is going to be my last push to reach that Olympic dream, so I have to level up,” added the daughter of PBA great Samboy Lim and lawyer Darlene Berberabe, former Pag-Ibig Fund president and CEO.
Confined right now in a training bubble at Inspire Sports Academy in Calamba, Laguna, Lim and her fellow Olympic aspirants from the Philippine karatedo team will fly to Turkey this weekend and hold a camp there for two months.
Turkish coach Okay Arpa will guide the team during the 60-day training where Lim, Sharif Afif, Alwyn Batican, Ivan Agustin, Jason Macaalay, Matthew Manantan and Joane Orbon will be pitted against world-class training partners.
“If we stay here (in Calamba) without training partners, we will not make progress when the competition comes. Training in Turkey is always intense and presents a different environment,” said Lim, who trained there prior to the 2019 SEA Games.
The team will return from Turkey on May 15 with Karate Pilipinas, the local karate federation, picking three males and three females who will try their luck in Paris. INQ