Monday, November 22, 2010

Two more boxers fan hopes for elusive gold

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Annie Albania drives Kim Hye Song of North Korea near the ropes with a right straight during their 48-51kg quarterfinal bout in women’s boxing in the Asian games. JOEY MENDOZA | Zoom
GUANGZHOU – All-conquering Annie Albania showed her killer instincts with a barrage of vicious straights that befell her North Korean opponent and raised hopes of a golden finish as competitions inched closer to the medal rounds yesterday in the XVI Asian Games.
The quarterfinal win in the 48-51 kg assured the Philippines of at least three bronze medals following the entry of brothers Rey Saludar (52 kg) and Victorio Saludar (46-49 kg) to the semifinals.
Albania rallied to beat Korea’s Kim Hye Song, 7-2, while Victorio Saludar dominated India’s Singh Amandeep early and pulled off a 6-1 win.
The national team of boxing head Ricky Vargas was hoping for one more late last night from Wilfredo Lopez in the 69 kg.
A four-man win in the semifinals would put the Philippines on line for a four-gold boxing haul that would better the record of the 1994 Hiroshima Games team and give Team Phl an overall production of six-gold medals that would send it past Southeast Asian Games powerhouse Indonesia (4-6-10).
The boxer’s exploits relegated to the background the harrowing losses in cycling, bowling, diving and athletics where athletes were nowhere in contention for a medal.
For the third straight Asiad, Hong Kong’s Wong Kam Po, best remembered as a tough contender in the Marlboro Tour, ruled the men’s individual road race, a nine lap, 180-km race, in 4:14:54.18.
He won by a margin of over 13 minutes over the Philippines Irish Valenzuela, 24th at 4:15:08.25, and Lloyd Lucien Reynante, 26th at 4:15:14.09.
Five members of the men’s team and four from the women’s squad bowed out of the bowling competitions, finishing the 24-game series from the single, doubles, trios and team events outside the top 16.
Biboy Rivera, the singles gold medalist, finished eighth overall with 5231 pinfalls and advanced to the Masters event which included only the top 16 in the all-events won by Malaysia and two from Korea.
Liza del Rosario finished 12th and Marianne Posadas 16th and last to join the hunt for bowling’s last gold medals – the Masters.
The women were out of the medal race in the completed team-of-five won by Korea, Indonesia and Malaysia.
Divers Jaime Asok and Rexel Ryan Fabriga when they did not finish their routine in the 10m synchronized platform diving, eliciting inquiries from the Philippine Olympic Committee pressed for answers by the covering media.
The duo completed only three of the six rounds in the event won by China.
In softball, Japan was so confident of a win it did not field top hurler Yukiko Ueno, and the Japanese went on to beat the Blu Girls, 4-0.
The loss was the Filipinas third loss in four games, tying them for fourth place with Korea, which blasted Thailand, 8-2. The Blu Girls earlier beat the Thais, 1-0.
Thailand was solo sixth with a 0-4 win-loss mark. The Blu Girls and the Koreans face off today to determine the fourth semifinalist after Chinese Taipei (4-0), Chinese (3-1), and the Japanese (3-1).

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