Unbreakable will Watanabe’s key to gold; Saso, Pagdanganan guide Tokyo tickets

Unbreakable will Watanabe’s key to gold; Saso, Pagdanganan book Tokyo tickets

Yuka Saso (left) and Bianca Pagdanganan are formally on the checklist of Filipino gold hunters in Tokyo. —AFP

Judoka Kiyomi Watanabe dislocated her left elbow in a match in Germany early final yr. However in lower than three weeks, the Filipino-Japanese was up and about, doing pushups, pull ups and lifting weights as if the harm by no means occurred.

“That’s how sturdy Kiyomi’s combating spirit is. Good factor it was not a fracture,’’ stated Philippine Judo Federation president Dave Carter in the course of the Philippine Sportswriters Affiliation Discussion board on Tuesday.

It’ll virtually be the identical energy of character that Watanabe, who was born in Cebu Metropolis and now based mostly in Japan, will deliver to the mat within the coming Tokyo Olympics.

“She has a giant coronary heart. Kiyomi profitable a medal for us is feasible. She would possibly shock us in the course of the Video games,’’ stated Carter within the weekly discussion board sponsored by Sensible/PLDT, Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor), Go For Gold, Milo, Braska, Amelie Lodge and San Miguel Corp.

In the meantime, golfers Yuka Saso and Bianca Pagdanganan formally certified for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics, pushing the Philippine delegation to 17 athletes.

Prime 60

The 2 secured slots within the Video games after putting inside the highest 60 of the Olympic Golf Rating. Saso is at No. 9 after profitable the US Girls’s Open title earlier this month whereas Pagdanganan, who has additionally turned heads in her rookie yr within the Women Skilled Golf Affiliation, is at No. 42.

The Philippines now has three golfers competing in Tokyo with Pagdanganan and Saso becoming a member of Juvic Pagunsan.

Watanabe, a 23-year-old Asian Video games silver medalist within the girls’s 63 kilogram division and reigning four-time Southeast Asian Video games champion certified by way of a continental quota awarded by the Worldwide Judo Federation, changing into the primary feminine Filipino judoka within the Olympics.

Watanabe has to succeed in the quarterfinals for a shot at a medal. To win the gold, she should win 5 to 6 matches.

Standing on Watanabe’s path to seize the nation’s first Olympic gold are world titleholder Clarisse Agbegnenou of France, Slovenia’s Tina Trstenjak, Martyna Trajdos of Germany, Japan’s Tashiro Miku and 2018 Asian Video games champion Nami Nabekura additionally from the host nation.

—With reviews from Mark Giongco INQ

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