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MANILA, Philippines – After four tries, Jerrold Pete Mangliwan’s first gold in the Asian Para Games couldn’t come in more thrilling fashion.
Mangliwan came charging down the last 30 meters of the wheelchair racing competition, slipping past erstwhile Japanese frontrunner Ueyonabaru Hirota to complete a come-from-behind triumph in the men’s 400-meter T52 finals of the 4th Asian Para Games on Friday, October 27, in Hangzhou, China.
After making his move at the halfway mark, Mangliwan, racing in lane 6, was running second entering the homestretch and was neck and neck with Hirota before nosing out his Japanese foe in a personal best time of one minute and .01.54 seconds to the latter’s 1:01.79.
“I’ve been in the Asian Games four times, and it’s only now that I won a medal like this. I really gave my all,” Mangliwan, a Tokyo Paralympian, said in Filipino.
The victory gave the Philippines its fifth gold, helping the country keep the 12th spot in the overall medal standings among 44 countries.
Mangliwan, who won a silver medal in the men’s 100m T52 race three days ago, also became the country’s third double medalist after swimmer Ernie Gawilan and chess player Menandro Redor, who won two golds on Thursday.
A native of Tabuk, Kalinga, Mangliwan said he was undaunted by formidable Japanese bets like Hirota, a bronze medalist in the Tokyo Paralympic Games, and Ito Tatsuya, who won the men’s 100m T52 gold last Tuesday and took the bronze (1:04.96) in the 400m.
Mangliwan’s triumph came after the golden performances of Gawilan, Redor, chess player Cheyzer Crystal Mendoza, and the men’s chess team of Menandro Redor, Armand Subaste, and Darry Bernardo.
Meanwhile, Philippine athletics bet Arman Dino clocked 55.45 seconds and finished seventh overall in the heats to advance to the finals of the men’s 400m T47 finals Saturday.
After a fruitful outing in the standard event, Filipino para chess players resumed their medal hunt and were in the thick of the fight for gold in three categories of the rapid event – both the men’s and women’s PI (physically impaired) and B2-B3 men’s divisions.
Veteran Henry Roger Lopez, a silver medalist in the men’s individual standard, shared top spot after four rounds with 3.5 points each with Iran’s Aski after both fought to a fighting draw in the fourth round of the men’s PI class.
Jasper Rom was in solo second spot with 3 points in the category after defeating Mongolia’s Sundui Sonom while Darry Bernardo, who bagged six gold medals in the Cambodia ASEAN Para Games, was a close second in the men’s B2-B3 class with 3.5 points after beating Gangolli Kishan.
Redor, who anchored a team and individual sweep of the standard event, was running a strong third with 3 points with a key win over Iranian Rashat Abadi Hamzeh Mosleh with two rounds to go.
Shrugging off a lackluster outing in the previous event, Chery Angot led the way and remained unbeaten in the women’s PI division with 4 points after four rounds in vanquishing Indonesia’s Nasip Firta Simanja.
Cheyzer Crystal Mendoza beat Vietnam’s Doan Thu Huyen and was tied for second with 3 points, with the top two players of each squad determining the outcome of the team event.
Filipino para cyclists continued their struggle with Arthus Bucay clocking 1:46.28 to finish fifth in the men’s C4-C5 road race at the CSC cycling road course. – Rappler.com