AS THE 30th Asian Games kicks off on August 18 to September 2 in Indonesia, Cordillera wushu athletes are expected to deliver for the country’s medal hopes.
From only 159 athletes in 2014, the Philippines is fielding 272 athletes for the biennial meet with wushu sending eight with two officials hoping to improve their 0-2-3 gold – silver – bronze production during the 2014 edition.
2014 silver medalist Daniel Parantac hopes to get the gold medal back for the country in the Asiad competing in men’s taolo Taijiquan / Taijijian.
Parantac will be joined by fellow Cordilleran Jean Claude Saclag who won the silver medal during the 2014 Games in sanda.
Benguet wushu pride and Southeast Asian silver medalist Thorton Quieney Lou Sayan is the fourth Cordilleran in the wushu national team.
A total of 462 gold medals in 40 sports will be at stake in Jakarta and Palembang. The Philippines will vie in 31 sports, and with a delegation nearly twice as much as before and hopes to do better.
Canoe, kayak and traditional boat race will field the biggest number of athletes with 27, followed by taekwondo and women’s softball with 17 each, women’s volleyball 14 and then men’s basketball, bowling and bridge with 12 each.
Other Cordillera athletes set to see action for the Asian Games are University of Baguio alumnus Jeordan Dominguez, and Benguet golfing pride Paolo Luigi Wong, 17.
Dominguez will be part of the country’s taekwondo team who traces his roots in Otucan, Bauko, Mountain Province is also the gold medalist in the 4th Asian Taekwondo Poomsae Championship.
Wong, the lone Filipino qualifier to the prestigious IMG Academy Junior World Championships, will see action first in San Diego, California from July 10 to 13 before the Asian Games. (Roderick Osis)