RIO DE JANEIRO: Marestella Torres Sunang, who hurt her hip during the long jump competition Tuesday evening, will have to wait and see whether she could represent the country in next month’s Asian Beach Games in Vietnam.
Sunang walked around with a limp the day after she competed and bowed out in her third and last Olympics.
The 35-year-old veteran underwent therapy and chiropractic sessions Wednesday under physicians Ferdinand Brawner and Martin Camara of the Philippine Olympic Committee, and said she felt better than the night of the competition.
Sunang hurt her hip during warm-up when she landed in on the portion of the sand that has not been cleared and raked by officials after two previous jumps. Her foot landed on exactly the same spot that the two previous jumpers had dug.
“It’s like when you expect to land on a soft surface but landed on a hard surface. She compressed her pelvis or hip joint and immediately she felt the pain,” said Camara, who worked on Sunang Wednesday afternoon.
“She felt the pain during long strides and couldn’t get the speed she wanted to give her the speed that she needed for her take-off,” said Camara, a noted chiropractor in Manila.
Sunang said she wasn’t able to sleep well Tuesday because of the pain. Before she went to bed, Brawner checked on her, too.
“Her pelvic muscles were beat up. I can tell. It was the effect of her landing on the hard portion of the sanded area. It was good she landed on her hip than her spine taking the impact,” said the POC physician.
Sunang said she will rest her injury for a week or two and see how it heals. Then she makes her decision regarding the Asian Beach Games that unfolds Sept. 24.
The four-time SEA Games gold medalist and 2009 Asian Championships long jump queen said she can’t force herself into competing if the injury does not heal in time.
“I’m not young anymore. In my younger days, I’ll go ahed and compete despite the pain,” she said.
“I’m not getting any younger,” added Sunang, who failed to make the finals of the long jump on her third and last Olympics.
“It’s a pity because was in peak form. But that’s part of the competition,” said Sunang, who has a personal best of 6.72 meters but only had a best jump of 6.22 last Tuesday.