Nievarez trains sights on SEA Games rowing gold defense
In order to fully prepare for the 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games slated in May where he is the defending champion, Philippine rowing ace Cris Nievarez has opted to skip the World Rowing Indoor Championship next month.
The 21-year-old Tokyo Olympian has put his SEA Games defense at the top of his priority list for the year, foregoing the chance to slug it out with the best in the world despite a silver medal effort in the men’s under-23 2,000 meters of the Asian Rowing Virtual Indoor Championships over the weekend.
“I think it would be better for me not to participate in the world championship and just focus on my preparation for the SEA Games,” Nievarez told the Inquirer. “[That’s because] I still need to lose weight for the SEA Games, and it will affect my preparations for the world championships where I qualified in the open category,’’
The Asian rowing’s virtual championship drew a total of 15 participants. Five other Filipino rowers qualified for the virtual world championship on Feb. 25 to 26.
The national rowing team actually bagged six silver medals and two bronzes in the Asian rowing championships, with newly recruited 19-year-old Kristine Paraon pocketing a pair of silvers in the women’s under-23 500m and 2,000m against eight competitors.
Other silver medalists were Joachim de Jesus in the men’s under-23 500m, Zuriel Sumintac in the men’s 500m and Alyssa Go in the women’s lightweight 500m.
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