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Catantan eyes 2024 Olympics
Samantha Catantan
STAR/File

Catantan eyes 2024 Olympics

Joey Villar (The Philippine Star) - May 5, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Missing the Tokyo Games, Filipina fencing ace Samantha Catantan, this early, is training her sights on the 2024 Paris Olympics.

“We’re now preparing for the next Olympics in Paris,” said Catantan during yesterday’s online Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum.

The Penn State Most Valuable Player (MVP) came tantalizingly close to claiming a Tokyo Games slot, settling for a bronze medal in the Asia Oceania Olympic Qualification Tournament in Tashkent, Uzbekistan last week.

What made it so heartbreaking was the fact that she had beaten Singapore bet Amitha Berthier twice before the latter took the foil gold and the lone spot to the quadrennial event.

Catantan defeated Berthier, a 2019 Southeast Asian Games gold medal winner, in the US NCAA’s pool play and during the elimination round in Tashkent, but couldn’t sustain her form and lost to Uzbek Yana Alborova in the semis.

Berthier eventually bested Alborova in the finals to make it to Tokyo.

“Itong Olympic qualifying ay motivation ko na kaya ko talaga, kaya naming umabot sa Olympics,” said Cantantan.

National team coach Rolando “Amat” Canlas agreed, saying: “It was a learning experience.”

SAMANTHA CATANTAN
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