SEA Games 2023: PH taekwondo jins Kurt Barbosa, Arven Alcantara win golds
PHNOM PENN—Taekwondo jins Kurt Barbosa and Arven Alcantara struck a pair of gold medals in taekwondo at the 32nd Southeast Asian Games.
The Tokyo Olympian Barbosa defeated his long-time idol Ramnarong Sawekwiharee of Thailand in the finals of the men’s -54kg category before Alcantara followed suit with a victory over another Thai in Chaichon Cho in the -68kg class.
“I always looked up to him (Sawekwiharee) ever since I began playing this sport. To be honest, he’s my inspiration to become better each time I fight,’’ said Barbosa, who has dominated the finweight division since the 2019 SEA Games in Manila.
The national taekwondo team hiked its gold collection to four after snaring two in poomsae on Friday.
Patrick King Perez ruled the men’s recognized poomsae individual and the trio of Jocel Lyn Ninobla, Aidaine Krishia Laxa and Maria Nicole Labayne triumphed the women’s recognized poomsae team event.