By Jonas Terrado
TAGAYTAY CITY — Margielyn Didal and Christiana Means assured the Philippines of its first gold medal in skateboarding competitions of the 30th Southeast Asian Games yesterday after arranging an all-Filipino final in the Game of Skate category here.
Didal defeated Indonesia’s Nyimas Cinta while Means prevailed over Kyandran Susanto, also of Indonesia, in the semifinals held at the Sigtuna Hall of the Tagaytay International Convention Center.
The two local bets were able to recover from slow starts in the event inspired by the rules used in a basketball game known as HORSE to forge a duel for the gold tomorrow afternoon in this city.
“Masaya na ako kasi nakuha na natin yung gold at silver,” said Didal, who entered the local sporting scene last year when she won gold in the Asian Games in Palembang, Indonesia.
Both skateboarders embraced after the Means’ victory before the two gestured as if they were facing each other in a boxing match.
Didal opened her campaign with a quarterfinal win over Myanmar’s Shin Thant Thaw Dar while Means bested Abdullah Nur Farah Atika of Indonesia.
The Philippines also saw its men’s competitors win their preliminary matches.
Jefrrey Gonzales defeated Indonesia’s Jufri Haryono Juvi Kedis and Daniel Ledermann beating Thailand’s Phetsuk Suppapit.
Atmosphere was loose throughout the event, with all participants seemingly caring little less of the huge undertaking they have to take.
“We were just having fun with ourselves,” said the 23-year-old Means, whose mother is Filipina.
The competition proceeded without any hitches after the scheduled start last Tuesday was postponed due to Typhoon Tisoy.