Phl Smart jins vie in world jr championships

(The Philippine Star) - March 17, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Twenty-one  prodigious junior fighters will carry the colors of the Philippines-SMART national team in the 2014 World Junior Taekwondo Championships and the world qualifying tournament for the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games on March 17-27 in New Taipei City, Taiwan.

The Filipino athletes are:

Male – Christian Mark Duntugan, finweight; Gian Carlo Gutierrez, fly; Ryel Joshua Ramirez, bantam; Aaron James Galita and King Philip Pineda, feather; Alfred Jason Abanto, light; Gian Francis Rubio, welter; John Christian Mapalo, light middle; Michael Laurence Licudine, middle; John Michael Agno, light heavy; and Joel Felipe Alejandro, heavy.

Female – Irene Therese Bermejo, fin; Cleio Marie Banez, fly; Colleen Heria, bantam; Stephanie Oslo, feather; Leslie Marie Agyamoc, light; Ma. Kaye Shannelle Romuar, welter; Gabrielle Hernandez, light middle; Bea Muriel Go, middle; Francesca Arianne Agojo, light heavy; and Brighty Rio Marie Salazar, heavy.

Victor Emmanuel Veneracion heads the team while the coaches are Jun Ho Ko, Roberto Cruz, Dax Alberto Morfe and Alvin Taraya.

Seventy countries, including Korea, China, France, Spain, Iran, Mexico and the United States, will be represented in the world competition.

The Philippines-SMART team has always been considered among the top contenders in the tournament.  The Filipinos bagged three bronze medals in the ninth World Junior Championships held in April 2012 at Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

The Phl-SMART team is supported by MVP Sports Foundation, Smart Communications Inc., Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT), TV 5, Meralco and Philippine Sports Commission.

AARON JAMES GALITA AND KING PHILIP PINEDA ALFRED JASON ABANTO BEA MURIEL GO BRIGHTY RIO MARIE SALAZAR CHRISTIAN MARK DUNTUGAN CLEIO MARIE BANEZ COLLEEN HERIA DAX ALBERTO MORFE AND ALVIN TARAYA FRANCESCA ARIANNE AGOJO GABRIELLE HERNANDEZ GIAN CARLO GUTIERREZ
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