Winning all in Jamie Limâs DNA
Jamie Lim of the Philippines delivers a blow against Ceyco Georgia Zefanya of Indonesia en route to the gold in the kumite individual female +61kg yesterday.
Joey Mendoza

Winning all in Jamie Lim’s DNA

Dante Navarro (The Philippine Star) - December 10, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — She’s got it all and it’s in her DNA.

Jamie Lim chopped and kicked her way to a gold-medal feat in karatedo, beating Indonesia’s Ceyco Zefanya, 2-1, in the final of women’s +61kg kumite in the 30th SEA Games at the World Trade Center yesterday.

It was the second gold for the karate team, which also has one silver and nine bronze medals, after Junna Tsukii’s win in the -50kg class marred by a post-victory controversy involving her coach.

But this one is free of any dispute but with a tinge of drama as she had to overcome tall odds to realize a dream SEAG gold. She had cut short her training and didn’t fight for four years to focus on her academics.

She returned only last June to hone up for the Games but not after graduating with honors (BS Mathematics, summa cum laude) from UP.

“Sobrang against the odds po, because ’yung mga kalaban ko, full-time athletes po sila. Nag-full time lang ako like five months ago,” said Lim. “Karate has always been in my heart, and 2019 SEA Games in the Philippines, how special is that, ‘di ba?”

It was.

And it was just as near-impeccable as her performance that saw her outclass Audrey Japvus of Malaysia, 7-2, in the quarters and ease out Vietnam’s Thao Thi Bui, 5-1, in the semis to arrange a gold medal duel with Zefanya.

“The timing is perfect, I just graduated, I got my goal in academics, and I think the signs just told me to. It’s calling me to come back. So I just went for it, bahala na, just give it your all. It paid off.”

No wonder this clever 22-year-old fighter is on top not only of her class but also of her sport. She’s the daughter of Atty. Darlene Berberabe, a former Pag-Ibig Fund CEO, and Samboy Lim, Philippine basketball’s “Skywalker.”

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