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Tabal’s next goal: rule Asian Games

By: Glendale G. Rosal August 21,2017 - 10:10 PM

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AFTER being crowned the best in Southeast Asia, Cebuana marathoner Mary Joy Tabal is now looking to be the best in Asia.

That’s why this early, the 28-year-old runner from barangay Guba, Cebu City, wants to start preparing for the Asian Games in Indonesia next year.

Tabal, the first Filipino woman marathoner to ever compete in the Olympics, won the gold medal in women’s marathon in the 29th Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) last Saturday in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Tabal plans to rest a bit when she returns to Cebu on Friday. After that, she wants to start preparing for the Asian Games. This is all part of her ultimate goal to book a return trip to the Olympics in 2020.

“We have a long-term plan all the way to Tokyo 2020. I don’t want to commit the same mistakes I had in Rio, so this early I want to prepare,” Tabal told

Tabal competed in last year’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and finished in 124th place.

Tabal said she was not properly nourished in her first try in the Olympics as she did not have the “Olympic” mindset.

“Unlike SEA Games, my mind during the Rio Olympics was not ready. I was not prepared for it. But I will do my best not to commit the same mistakes now that a lot of people are supporting me,” said Tabal.

She is hoping that she won’t encounter any more problem with the Philippine Athletic Track and Field Association (Patafa) leading to Asian Games.

“I hope to get the go signal from them (Patafa) to represent the country in the Asian Games next year so that I can start training early because it’s going to be a very tough competition. I will be facing the best athletes from Asia,” said the Motorace-Kawasaki Racing Team ace.

According to Tabal, her corporate backer Motorace Philippines will be planning for her next training camp abroad. Among the places she may be sent to are Tuscany, Italy and Saint Moritz in Switzerland, where she trained for three months to prepare for SEA Games. She also revealed that the team is also planning to send her to Uganda and Kenya.

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TAGS: Asian, games, goal, Next, rule

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