SEA Games

Gymnastics leads SEA Games gold charge for PH; athletics, dancesport deliver

Delfin Dioquino
Gymnastics leads SEA Games gold charge for PH; athletics, dancesport deliver

GOLD MINE. Carlos Yulo and national gymnastics team double their gold haul from the 2019 SEA Games.

Athit Perawongmetha/Reuters

Gymnastics bags 7 golds, while athletics and dancesport clinch 5 golds apiece as the Philippines – excluding its past two SEA Games hosting – breaches the 50-gold mark for the first time since 1993

MANILA, Philippines – Carlos Yulo and the national gymnastics team wound up as the Philippines’ top performers in the Southeast Asian Games in Vietnam as the country bagged a total of 52 golds.

Gymnastics led the Philippines’ medal charge with 7 golds, with Yulo churning out 5 golds on top of 2 silvers to finish as the most bemedaled Filipino athlete.

Yulo ruled the men’s individual all-around, vault, floor exercise, horizontal bar, and still rings as gymnastics doubled its gold haul of 3 in the 2019 SEA Games.

The Philippines’ other gymnastics gold came from the women’s team all-around led by Aleah Finnegan, who also struck gold in the vault.

Gymnastic totaled 14 medals with 4 silvers and 3 bronzes as the Philippines finished behind host Vietnam.

Meanwhile, athletics figured in a tie with dancesport for second-most number of golds for the Philippines with 5 apiece.

EJ Obiena (men’s pole vault), Eric Cray (men’s 400m hurdles), Clinton Kingsley Bautista (110m hurdles), and William Morrison (men’s shot put) all defended their SEA Games thrones.

Kayla Richardson added another gold by reclaiming her women’s 100m title as the Philippines captured 26 athletics medals – including 7 silvers and 14 bronzes – to land at third.

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Meanwhile, the Philippines topped the dancesports competition thanks in large part to another dominant SEA Games showing from Sean Aranar and Ana Nualla.

Aranar and Nualla reigned in Viennese waltz, tango, and five dance anew, while Mark Jayson Gayon and Mary Joy Renigen (slow foxtrot) and Michael Angelo Marquez and Stephanie Sabalo (cha cha) triumphed as well.

The Philippines amassed an additional of 5 silvers and 2 bronzes for a total of 12 dancesport medals.

Just like previous SEA Games, billiards came through for the Philippines with 4 golds, 4 silvers, and 2 bronzes to bring home one-fourth of the 40 medals up for grabs in the sport.

Rubilen Amit clinched the women’s nine-ball and 10-ball golds as Johann Chua and Carlo Biado split the men’s nine-ball and 10-ball titles, respectively, after facing each other in the finals of both events.

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The country also performed well in boxing and triathlon/duathlon, where it won three gold medals each.

Kim Mangrobang fueled the Philippines’ campaign early with golds in the women’s triathlon and duathlon, while Fernando Casares copped the men’s triathlon gold.

Filipino boxers Eumir Marcial (men’s -75kg), Rogen Ladon (men’s -52kg), and Ian Clark Bautista (-57kg) then powered the Philippines’ final push for fourth place with a string of golden performances.

Except for its 2005 and 2019 hosting of the SEA Games, the Philippines breached the 50-gold mark for the first time since the 1993 edition, where it won 57 golds for third place.

Other sports where the country won multiple golds were judo, weightlifting, muay thai, bowling, jiu-jitsu, kickboxing, wushu, taekwondo, and esports with two each. –

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.