Pinoy jiu jitsu bets set eyes on Asian Beach Games conquest
ABS-CBN Sports on Jun 14, 2016 08:20 PM
The Philippine jiu jiitsu team are looking snare a couple or more gold medals in the Asian Beach Games.
Buoyed by its success in the 2nd Jiu Jitsu Regional Championship in Hanoi, Vietnam, the Philippine team is now looking to repeat its act in the coming 5th Asian Beach Games three months from now.
The Sept. 24 to Oct. 3 event will be held in Vietnam from where the national squad just came back after winning two gold medals and a silver courtesy of Annie Ramirez, Hansel Co, and legendary John Baylon.
Co and Baylon, who are both playing-coaches, said they will face almost the same cast of opponents in the Asian Beach Games, which give the Filipinos the confidence they can equal – if not surpass – the two gold medals jiu jitsu delivered for the country in the last edition of the meet in Phuket, Thailand two years ago.
“Yung Asian Beach Games, nakita na namin halos yung mga makakalaban namin, although may mga madadagdag pa rin sa kanila like yung Mongolia and Japan,” said Baylon in the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum Tuesday at Shakey’s Malate.
“Pero halos yun at yun din (ang makakalaban).”
Ramirez delivered double golds for the country in the Hanoi meet by topping the 55 kg and open weight categories, while Co took home the gold in the men’s 77 kg. weight.
Baylon, the nine-time Southeast Asian Games gold medal winner in judo who has successfully crossed over and is now a jiu jitsu practitioner, bagged the silver in the men’s 75 kg. category.
“Yung (Asian) Beach Games nanalo na tayo diyan. So gusto naman nating i-break yung record na yun. Yun ang target naming ngayon,” he said, obviously referring to the two gold medals she and Maybeline Masuda won in Thailand in 2014.
The national jiu jitsu team currently has a 19-man national pool, including two junior members.
Baylon added in the same session that hopefully the sport will be added as part of the calendar of events when the country hosts the Southeast Asian Games in 2019.
“Baka puwedeng masama, kasi sa 2017 (in Kuala Lumpur), malabo na,” he said.