Chessers, tanker add 4 more golds

MANILA, Philippines — Team Philippines came into the third Asian Para Games with hopes of surpassing its gold-less, five-silver, five-bronze medal performance in the last edition four years ago in Incheon, South Korea. They did that and more.

Delivering the victories as promised, the Filipino chessers harvested three gold medals in chess including two from FIDE Master Sander Severino, who topped the individual standard P1 (physically handicapped) and the team event alongside Henry Lopez and Jasper Rom.

Later in the day, Ernie Gawilan topped the men’s 100m backstroke S7 event to claim his second gold medal after ruling the 200m individual medley SM7 Sunday. He also won two silver medals in 50m free and 100m free to hike his earnings to P3 million in government incentives.

Menandro Redor, Arman Subaste and Israel Peligro came through with a performance to remember, capturing the team standard B2-B3 (visually impaired) gold, for the country’s third gold in the sport that had also been traditional gold mines in the ASEAN Para Games.

Redor copped a silver in the individual standard B2-B3 while Rom and Subaste bagged a bronze each in the individual standard P1 and individual standard B2-B3, respectively.

The Phl thus hiked its total to five gold, six silver and six bronze medals, which is good for 10th overall behind runaway leader China, which has an 88-38-33 (gold-silver-bronze) medal haul. The first two golds came from Gawilan Sunday and tenpin bowler Kim Ian Chi Monday.

The Filipinos are also fourth overall among Southeast Asian countries behind the host Indonesians (13-20-23), Thais (9-16-22) and the Malaysians (7-8-15).