Pinoys raring to rule arnis
Joey Villar (The Philippine Star) - December 1, 2019 - 12:00am

ANGELES CITY, Pampanga, Philippines — The Philippines goes full force with a 19-strong crew out on a mission of winning 11 to 12 of the 20 gold medals up for grabs in arnis beginning today at the Angeles University Foundation Gym here.

“We are eyeing 11 to 12 gold medals,” said Sen. Juan Miguel Zubiri, president of the Philippine Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation.

A total of eight gold medals will be disputed in Day One – men’s full-contact live stick’s 55kg and less, +55kg less 60kg, +60kg less 65kg, and +65kg and women’s full contact live stick’s 50kg and less, +50kg less 55kg, +55kg less 60kg and +60kg.

Another eight will be offered the next day in the men’s full contact padded stick’s 55kg and less, +55kg less 60kg, +60kg less 65kg and +65kg and women’s full contact padded stick’s 50kg and less, +50kg less 55kg, +55kg less 60kg and +60kg.

The last four events to be contested the third and final day are in the men and women anyo non-traditional open weapon and men and women anyo traditional open weapon.

Leading the country’s bid are Abegail Abad, Mary Allin Aldeuguer, Villardo Cunamay, Sheena del Monte, Elmer Manlapas, Ross Ashley Monville, Jude Oliver Marie Rodriguez, Ryssa Jezzel Sanchez, Carloyd Tejada, Billy Joel Valenzuela, Jezebel Morcillo, Mark David Puzon, Jedah Mae Soriano, Nino Mark Toledo, Eza Rai Yalong, Mike Banares, Erlin Mae Busacay, Crisamuel Delfin and Jesfer Huquire.

Though he’s confidet of his wards’ chances, Zubiri picks the Vietnam, Myanmar and Cambodia bets to crowd the hosts for top honors in the sport making it debut as a regular sport after being part of the calendar in the 2005 Manila Games as a demo event.

“I don’t want to discount the possibility of Vietnam winning a number of golds as well as Myanmar and Cambodia,” said Zubiri. “But I guarantee that we will be able to rake in most of the golds.”

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