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The Philippine Muay Thai team continue to ramp up preparations for the coming 30th Southeast Asian Games through international tournaments and training. Just recently, the Filipinos gave the country something to cheer about when they hauled in 10 medals when they participated at the East Asian Muaythai Championships in Hong Kong.
Ariel Lee Lampacan, Jenelyn Plain Olsim, and Collen Sadi accounted for the three gold medals, ruling the Men’s 54-kg, Women’s 54-kg and Women’s 48-kg respectively.
Jerry Plain, Ryan Jakiri, Hansel Bilog, Philip Delarmino and Erika Bomogao Eslay took home the silver medals in their weight classes while Liane Benito and Sian Capuchino accounted for the two bronze medals.
“Masasabi ko naman po na malaki na-improve ng ating manlalaro. Kasi bago po kami sumali dito sa East Asian Championships ay nagkaron din kami ng foreign training at competition doon sa Thailand. Lalong nahasa po ang atletang Pilipino,” said PH Muaythai coach Billy Alumno in an interview.
When asked on weaknesses that the Filipinos need to work on, Alumno singled out clinching. But according to him, this was something they worked on over at Thailand already.
“Kaya din po kami pumunta sa Thailand. Sa clinching po, doon namin nahasa mga bata. Dito po kasi sa Pilipinas, magkakakilala sila kaya hindi ito masyado nade-develop. Kaya sa Thailand, naka training nila yung mga malalakas na fighter from professional Muay Thai,” he explained.
Aside from clinching, another area that Alumno plans to work on with PH Muaythai bets is their boxing skills.
“Kelangan pa namin improve boxing skills namin. Dito namin hinahasa sa Pilipinas kasi madaming magagaling na boxer dito. Lalo na kung kontra sa Thailand, tinging ko boxing ang magandang pangontra sa kanila clinching. Magagamit din ng mga atleta to sa darating na World Martial Arts Masterships sa Korea at SEA Games,” said Alumno.
As for the coming SEA Games, coach Alumno is upbeat on the chances of the Philippines. He is confident that the Filipino fighters will give it their all and unleash an impressive performance in front of their “kababayans”.
“Dahil dito gagawin sa Pilipinas ang SEA Games, ang kumpyansa ng ating mga athletes ay malaki lalo na sa harap ng kababayan natin. Siguradong bibigay nila ang more than 100-percent nila na kakayahan upang manalo sa SEA Games,” said Alumno.
For now, the Philippine Muaythai team will try to further hone their skills when they head to Korea. The Philippine Muaythai team is set to compete at the 2019 Chungju World Martial Arts Masterships from August 38 to September 3.