Asian Games: PH Fencers out to end medal drought
ABS-CBN Sports on Aug 17, 2018 04:59 PM
(Photo courtesy of 18th Asian Games Jakarta-Palembang 2018 on Facebook)
JAKARTA—The country’s eight-member fencing team have set their goal in these 18th Asian Games—a medal of any color would glitter like gold.
That’s according to Philippine Fencing Federation chief Mayor Richard Gomez, also the Chief of Mission to the Games that open on Saturday night and end onSeptember 2.
The country has not missed sending a team to the Asian Games since 1974 in Tehran, but has not won any medal.
For the Games that Indonesia is hosting only for the second time since 1956, the Philippines is pinning its hopes on Samantha Kyle Catantan, Maxine Esteban, Wilhelmina Lozada and Justine Tinio in women's foil individual and team event; Brenan Louie, Nathaniel Perez and Michael Nicanor in men's foil individual and team; and Hanniel Abella lone competitor for the women’s individual epee.
To prepare for the Games, the Ormoc City sent the nationals to a three-week training in Paris and had them compete in the Trekanten International-Nordic Championships Foil 2018 at Valby Hallen in Denmark where Esteban, 17, finished second in the women’s under-20 individual foil.
The fencers also saw action in the Junior and Cadet World Championships in Italy in April, the 22nd Asian Championships in Thailand in June and at the 15th World Championships in China last month.
Lozada is the best bet in men’s epee after Noelito Jose Jr. was injured while cross training.
"As a CDM, my NSA (National Sport Association) is entitled to field a maximum of 24 fencers. But we did not do that and instead we chose the best who have chances of winning at the Asian level like the Asian Games”, Gomez said on Thursday night before boarding a plane to Indonesia.