KUALA LUMPUR – Rookie Rhezie Canama Aragon failed to recover from a sluggish start, losing to Indonesian Mariska Halinda, 4-9, in the women -53 kg finals of the 29th Southeast Asian Games taekwondo tournament at the KLCC Hall 1 here on Monday.
Tied at 3-all after the opening round, Aragon took some body hits from Halinda and fell behind in the second and third rounds after being unable to crack the Indonesian’s sturdy defense to settle for silver medal in her maiden appearance in the regional meet.
“Sa laban, palagay ko po naman patas lang kami. Di naman ako kinabahan kasi sabi ng coach ko kaya ko yan at nag-cheer ang mga teammates ko,” noted the National University varsity squad mainstay. “Kaya lang naunahan ko at malakas yong depensa noon kalaban.”
“Babawi na lang ako sa susunod kong mga laban,” bared Aragon, who will also be seeing action in the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan barely three weeks from now.
Two more jins remain in the hunt for gold at the close of the taekwondo tourney on Tuesday.
They are Singapore SEA Games silver medalist Francis Aaron Agojo, who will open his campaign in the quarterfinals of the men’s -63 kg division and Rio Olympic Games veteran Kirstie Elaine Allora, who was drawn in the women’s -73 kg semifinals against Sirimanotham Sonesavanh of Laos.