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Watanabe, Ramirez pin down two golds in judo
Gerry Carpio (The Philippine Star) - December 21, 2013 - 12:00am

NAY PYI TAW – Young Kiyomi Watanabe, born of a Filipino mother from Mandaue and bred in Japan, and former champion Gilbert Ramirez took advantage of a two-month training under the best coaches of Japan to score convincing victories and hand the national judo team two golds and put it on course for a projected five gold medals going into today’s last judo fights of the 27th Southeast Asian Games.

The 16-year-old Watanabe, who joined the original eight-member national team in a two-month training in Japan before the SEA Games, threw her opponent Thi Hoa Bui of Vietnam to the ground and used her lethal weapon – the grapple – to pin down her rival and score, 101-0 – equivalent to full point (Wasari technically) – to end the bout in the last 1:30 of the one-round bout in the -63kg category.

Ramirez, winner of the gold medal in the 2003 and 2005 SEA Games, used his powerful grip and even more powerful arms to drop his rival Thai Bonpot Lertthaisong to the ground and win by arm bar in the -73 kg class. The Thai indicated surrender with a tapout barely 4 seconds left in the round.

In the other final bout, Jennielou Mosqueda, who won over Indonesian Kadek Anny Pandini in the semifinal round, lost by decision to On Pongchaliew of Thailand in a scoreless draw, the win awarded by the referee in the finals of the 52-57 kg category.

“This girl Miyomi is very serious about her sport. We took her into the national pool at an early age to expose her to competitions at a higher level. She is not used to dirty tricks because the Japanese culture which she learned revolves around clean and fair competition,” said national coach Roland Llamas. “At least she is adjusting to a new and different kind of judo.”

Watanabe, who lives in Japan with her mother Irene and Japanese father who works with the Sangrio factory, had to leave the national team training in Japan to compete on Dec. 8 in the Asian Youth Games in China, where she took the bronze to qualify for next year’s Youth Olympic Games.

ASIAN YOUTH GAMES GILBERT RAMIREZ INDONESIAN KADEK ANNY PANDINI IRENE AND JAPANESE JENNIELOU MOSQUEDA ON PONGCHALIEW OF THAILAND ROLAND LLAMAS SOUTHEAST ASIAN GAMES THAI BONPOT LERTTHAISONG THI HOA BUI
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