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SEA Games: Skateboarding confident of gold medal chances


The Philippines can complete a rare sweep of all eight gold medals in skateboarding in the coming 30th Southeast Asian Games in Manila on Nov. 30-Dec. 11.

And Asian Games gold medalist Margielyn Didal — bless her heart — could again provide another shining moment for the Filipinos during the prestigious competition.

“Why not? It’s a great possibility — and not just an empty boast,” said Skateboarding and Roller Sports Association of the Philippines, Inc. (SRSAPI) president Monty Mendigoria during his appearance in the 25th “Usapang Sports” by the Tabloids Organization in Philippine Sports (TOPS) at the National Press Club in Intramuros last Thursday.

The reasons for Mendigoria’s optimism?

Didal, who made history by winning one of four gold medals of the country in the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta and Palembang, Indonesia; the much-improved Renzo Mark Feliciano and “a slew of Filipino-foreign players ready to make their presence felt,”

There are eight gold medals at stake in skateboarding, a fast-growing popular sport which will make its debut in the SEA Games. And Mendigoria believes the Filipinos have more than fair chances of winning all of them.

“If you ask me, I think six golds is a more realistic target. But we’ll go there to try to get all eight golds. Hindi imposible,” added Mendigoria, who was accompanied by Feliciano in the weekly public service program sponsored by Philippine Sports Commission, National Press Club, PAGCOR, Community Basketball Association, and HG Guyabano Tea Leaf Drinks.

“With a team reinforced by top-level Fil-foreigners, I think we can achieve our goal (of winning all eight golds),” added Mendigoria, who pointed to Thailand and Indonesia as the country’s biggest rivals for the medals.

“Only recently, Thailand brought in a strong Thai-American to reinforced their team to the SEA Games,” he said.

Aside from Didal and Feliciano, the other members of the national skateboarding team are Jeff Gonzales and United States-based Christiana Means and Jericho “Kiko” Francisco Jr.

Means is from Portland, Oregon, while Francisco is from Carson, California.

Also being eyed for inclusion to the national team are one more Fil-Am and a Fil-German, who can provide a lot of surprises.

Events to be disputed in skateboarding are street, park, game of skate at downhill in both the men’s and women’s divisions.

The venue of skateboarding will be in Tagaytay.

Also present during the forum were Philippine Executive Chess Association (PECA) president Dr. Jenny Mayor and Engineer Tony Balinas and CBA-Naga team officials and players.

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