EXPERIENCE is the best teacher.
This was the statement of Dabawenya multi-athlete Sydney Tancontian after she settled with a silver medal in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Senior Open Wrestling Championship recently held in Singapore.
Tancontian, a 15-year-old Davao Central High School student, told members of the Davao Sportswriters Association (DSA) during its forum at The Annex events center of SM City Davao that it was a huge learning experience for her after losing to Vietnamese wrestler Lua Hang Huong to settle for second at the women's 69 kilograms division.
"Vietnam is considered the best here in Southeast Asia and some of them are Olympians. The fight was good but she [Huong] has more experience so that was her biggest advantage," Tancontian said.
She also said that she needs to be more familiarized with the wrestling rules saying, "I did not notice that my opponent was already circling around my back and I did not know that she was already scoring points while doing that."
Describing her experience in the competition, Tancontian said: "I felt nervous and pressured since it was the first time that I have represented the Philippines. My teammates were also good so as the youngest player in the team, I also wanted to show that I could win a medal for the team."
But while she admitted that she lacked experience in wrestling, she said her expertise in judo came in handy when she squared off against an opponent from the host Singapore as she was able to execute a judo throw to pin her opponent down and win.
Following her silver finish, she hopes to compete in the wrestling event of the Philippine National Games set next month while she is also poised to sweep medals in her last Philippine Olympic Committee-Philippine Sports Commission Batang Pinoy National Championships stint.