Team Philippines capped its impressive performance in the Asian Youth and Junior Championships on Wednesday with 19 gold medals, including three from weightlifter Vanessa Sarno, at the Gautam Buddha University in New Delhi, India.
The 19-year-old Sarno registered a total lift of 216kgs (95kgs in snatch and 121kgs in the clean and jerk) to defend the Junior women’s 71kg title.
Thailand’s Phattharathida Wongsing finished second with 212kgs (92kgs and 120kgs) followed by Uzbekistan’s Sevinchoy Komilova with198kgs (88kgs and 110kgs).
Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas (SWP) President Monico Puentevella said the two-time SEA Games champion Sarno was rushed to Sharda Hospital on July 27 and placed in the intensive care unit after developing a high fever.
“Thank goodness, she recovered. I pulled her out of the hospital and let her rest in the hotel. She’ll go back to the hospital upon arrival in Manila,” Puentevella told the Philippine News Agency.
Sarno, who was born and raised in Barangay Bool in Tagbilaran City, Bohol province, has been training under former national lifters Nicolas Jaluag and Liza Danao for the past 11 years.
Zamboanga lifters delivered most of the medals courtesy of Jhodie Peralta (3 golds, Youth women’s 49kg); Angeline Colonia (3 golds, 1 silver and 1 bronze, Youth/Junior women’s 45kg); siblings Rosegie Ramos (3 golds, Junior women’s 49kg) and Rose Jean Ramos (1 gold and 2 silvers, Junior women’s 45kg); Albert Ian delos Santos (2 golds and 2 silvers, Youth/Junior men’s 61kg); Alexsandra Ann Diaz (1 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze, Youth women’s 40kg) and Rosalinda Faustino (2 silvers and 1 bronze, Youth women’s 55kg).
The other medalists were Prince Keil delos Santos of Angono, Rizal with two golds and one silver) and Eron Borres of Cebu City with one gold, one silver and one bronze in the Youth men’s 49kg category.
The five coaches who joined the India trip are Robert Colonia, Allen Jayfrus Diaz, Joe Patrick Diaz, Patrick Cielo Lee and Kelly Kay Rojas, who looked after Sarno at the hospital.
The Youth division is for athletes 13-17 years old while the Junior division is for 15 to 20 years old.
The Philippines won 15 medals last year in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The medalists were Rose Jean Ramos (4 golds, 1 silver, 1 bronze), Sarno (3 golds), Faustino (3 golds), Rosegie Ramos (3 golds), Colonia (2 golds, 1 silver), and Prince Keil Delos Santos (2 bronzes).
Prince Keil Delos Santos, Borres, Colonia, Faustino and Albert Ian Delos Santos were also gold winners at the 2023 International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Youth World Championships in Durres, Albania. (PNA)