Catantan to trek rough road in Paris

Joey Villar - The Philippine Star
Catantan to trek rough road in Paris
Sam Catantan
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — Filipino fencer Sam Catantan’s road to Paris Olympic glory is littered with thorns and spikes.

Catantan said there is a chance she would meet either one of the top two fencers in the world as early as the round-of-32 in women’s foil in Paris with her low ranking points due to an ACL injury that sidelined her for eight months.

“I was out the whole year because of the injury and started fencing by the end of February, eight months without fencing, all rehab, physical training and strength and conditioning,” said Catantan, who sustained the injury during last year’s Phnom Penh Southeast Asian Games.

“Up to now naka-knee brace pa ako for safety. But like I always say, ibibigay ko ang best ko and perform at the highest level,” said Catantan in the PSA Forum at the RMSC Conference Room sponsored SMC, Philippine Sports Commission, Philippine Olympic Committee, Smart/PLDT, Milo and ArenaPlus, the leading sports entertainment gateway in the country.

National team coach Roland Amat said the road for Catantan starts outside the round-of-32 where she would face fellow qualifiers ranked outside the top 32 in a knockout format.

If she survives, she’ll barge straight to the next phase where she would face either World No. 1 Lee Kiefer of the United States or No. 2 Martina Favaretto of Italy.

“Importante nabuksan na pinto. Parang si Hidilyn (Diaz), ‘yun din susundan namin,” said Amat.

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