Filipino equestrian Syquia wins gold

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Veteran international campaigner Colin John Syquia copped the gold medal in the individual show jumping event of the 2017 Southeast Asian Games equestrian competition on Monday at the International Endurance Putrajaya Equestrian Park in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Riding his horse Endurance E, Syquia registered 37.63 seconds in the jump-off round to claim the top honors against Malaysian bets Sharmini Christina Ratnasigham (41.30) and Mohd Qabil Ambak Mahama Fathil (41.66), who settled for silver and bronze, respectively.

The event ended in a jump-off after five athletes had clean jumps in the first two rounds.

Besides Syquia, Ratnasigham and Fathil, the other athletes in the jump-off were fourth placer Nasir Mohd of Brunei Darussalam and fifth placer Catherine Yen Tung Chew of Singapore.

Syquia had 80.03 in the first round and 61.93 in the second round without a penalty.

Olympian Marie Antonette Leviste wound up sixth overall with 79.92 in the first round and 58.33 in the second round with four penalties.

The Philippine team placed second overall in equestrian with one gold and one silver.

Last week, Syquia and Leviste joined Chiara Sophia Amor and Joker Arroyo in winning the silver medal in the team show jumping event.

Malaysia pocketed five gold from individual dressage, team dressage, team endurance and team show jumping on top of three silver and one bronze while Thailand placed third with two silver and two bronze, Singapore was fourth with two bronze and Cambodia ended fifth with one bronze.

In tae kwon do, Rhezie Aragon suffered a 4-9 loss to Mariska Halinda of Indonesia to settle for silver in the women’s -53 kgs.

The first round ended in 3-3 but the Indonesian jin unloaded three straight points to take the upper hand, 6-3, at the end of the second round.

Aragon only produced a single point against Halinda’s three more points in the final round.

Only three athletes were entered in the-53 kgs. with Aragon earning an automatic spot in the gold-medal match through bye.

Meanwhile, hobbling with a knee injury, Nestor Colonia faded in the weightlifting competition at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Center.

One of the country’s two weightlifters in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics last year, Colonia lifted a meager 113 kg in the snatch and 140 kg in the clean and jerk for a total of 254 kg to land fifth out of six entries.

Thach Kim Tuan, the Youth Olympics gold medalist and world record-holder in the 56 kg, lifted 120 kg in the snatch and 149 kg in clean and jerk for a total of 260 kg to retain the crown he won in the Myanmar SEA Games in 2013.

Surahmat Bin Suwoto Wuoy of Indonesia captured the bronze medal with 119 kg in snatch and 148 kg in clean and jerk for a total of 267 kg while Witoon Mingmoon of Thailand grabbed the bronze medal with 110 kg in snatch and 149 kg in clean and jerk for a total of 259 kg.

“I really can’t pull it off; I’m not in perfect shape,” said Colonia, who also bombed out in the Incheon Asian Games and the Summer Games, in Filipino. “Every time I try to make a lift, my knees hurt. I’m not in good condition.”

His friend – Olympic silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz – was at the sidelines and felt the agony Colonia has been going through.

“I think he really needs to rest and then go back to his passion,” said Diaz, who hails from the same town as Colonia in Zamboanga. “He has to forget and down time and realize against his dream and what he wants to be.”

“Only him can address what needs to be addressed.”

Colonia has enough time to recuperate as the qualifying tournament for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 is set in three month’s time.

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