SEA Games 2023: Sam Catantan settles for fencing silver after knee injury
PHNOM PENH—Sam Catantan handily won over Singapore’s Kemei Cheung in the semifinals of women’s foil fencing but had to withdraw from the gold-medal match due to an injured knee on Friday at the 32nd Southeast Asian Games.
The 21-year-old Catantan twisted her left knee near the end of their duel and went on to prevail, 15-6, that set up a much-awaited finals’ encounter with Singapore’s Maxine Jie Xin Wong.
Catantan, last year’s champion in the Hanoi SEA Games, was brought out of the Chroy Changvar Convention Hall B on a stretcher as he could hardly stand on her own.
Ormoc City representative and Philippine Fencing Association president Richard Gomez said they won’t risk aggravating the hurting knee with the Penn State standout opting not to play anymore.
“The finals will begin in about 20 minutes. If she doesn’t feel good, we won’t risk it,’’ said Gomez.
— INQUIRER Sports (@INQUIRERSports) May 12, 2023
Catantan’s silver is the second for the national fencing team after Noelito Jose put up a brave front before victory slipped from his grasp in the men’s epee individual finals.
“I hope it’s nothing serious. We still don’t know the extent of the injury,’’ said PSC Commissioner Walter Torres, a former national fencer who saw action in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.
Singapore’s Jian Tong Si To used his quickness to the hilt and defeated Jose, 15-11, in their gold-medal encounter.
Jose, who arranged the title clash with To by toppling Singapore’s Simon Renjie Lee in the semifinals, duplicated his medal output during the Vietnam edition last year.
Jylyn Nicanor joined Jose and Catantan on the podium after obtaining the bronze medal in womens’ individual sabre. She lost to Singapore’s Jie Min Heng, 9-15, in the semifinals.