MANILA — Former judoka Annie Ramirez gave the Philippines its second gold medal after dominating the women’s -55kg division in the jiu-jitsu event on Monday night at the 5th Asian Beach Games in Danang City, Vietnam.
Ramirez defeated Thai Siramol Deepudsa in the final to duplicate her feat in the 2014 edition in Phuket, Thailand where she won the gold in the -60kg division.
On her way to the final, Ramirez beat Angelina Filippova of Turkmenistan in the quarterfinal and Lea Farhat of Libya in the semifinal.
Ramirez won two golds in the 2nd Jiu-Jitsu Regional Championships South East & East Asia held in Hanoi, Vietnam last June. She was named Most Valuable Player twice while playing for the University of Santo Tomas judo team in the UAAP.
“Overwhelming passion and love for country, I witnessed for myself how Annie and the rest of team who competed yesterday and days before that prepared and were dead set to make it happen. Without even saying, you can tell with her demeanor and overall energy that Annie was out to duplicate her achievement in Phuket,” said Philippine delegation Chef de Mission Karen Tanchanco-Caballero in an interview on Tuesday morning.
“I can only try to reciprocate the passion and hunger of our athletes to bring honor to our country in this competition. Truly enriching and humbling. I feel so honored to be of service to these fine, grounded and determined national athletes and officials,” added the official, who is also president of the Philippine Amateur Sepak Takraw Association.
The jiu-jitsu team has contributed five medals, including Margarita Ochoa’s gold in the women’s -45kg division, to the Philippine campaign in the tournament organized by the Olympic Council of Asia. Bronze winners were Gian Taylor Dee (silver, men’s -62kg), Jenina Kaila Napolis (bronze, women’s -55kg) and Apryl Jessica Eppinger (bronze, women’s -62kg).
The other bronze medalists were Lloyd Dennis Catipon (men’s -73kg), Helen Dawa (women’s -52kg) and Jenielou Mosquesda (women’s -57kg) in Kurash; Philip Delarmino (men’s bantamweight 51-54kg), Jonathan Polosan (men’s light welterweight 60-63.5kg) and Jay Harold Gregorio (men’s middleweight 71-75kg) in Muay; and the women’s trio of Josefina Maat, Gelyn Evora and Deseree Autor in sepak takraw. Jean Malanum/PNA-northboundasia.com