Motivated by their fathers, Cebu’s Alexis Sy-Chua, Elreen Ando deliver SEA Games medals
CEBU CITY, Philippines—Two Cebuana athletes who won silver medals in the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) have something in common.
Alexis Sy-Chua and Elreen Ando both had the same inspiration that led them to their medal-winning performances in the Vietnam Games.
This as prior to the SEA Games, both Sy and Ando’s fathers passed away.
Sy, a veteran of the Philippine Team in various international and world championships in bowling, bagged the silver medal in the women’s singles bowling event.
It marked her first individual silver medal in the SEA Games.
Ando, won a silver medal to duplicate her 2019 SEA Games performance in the women’s -64-kilogram division of the weightlifting event.
In an interview with CDN Digital, these two bemedalled Cebuana athletes revealed that both of their fathers wished to see them in the SEA Games.
Sy, whose father passed away in August 2021, almost skipped the SEA Games as she still mourned the passing of her father.
“Actually, I was planning to skip the SEA Games, kay ang original schedule was November, and that time my dad passed away pag August. Ni ana ko dili ko ganahan mo apil,” said Sy, who hails from Barangay Guadalupe.
Sy eventually fulfilled her father’s wish and she delivered a silver medal by scoring a total of 1,320 pins behind Singapore’s Shi Hua Cherie Tan (1,442), and ahead of Hui Fen New (1,319).
“So far ika sixth nga SEA Games, very memorable kay first nako nga silver and first nako nga individual event nga naka medal ko,” said Sy.
What’s more accomplishing for Sy is that she will finally be able to come back home after 12 years of focusing on her bowling career in Manila.
“I spent 12 years in Manila, nisamot ug ka mingaw because of the pandemic. Pero nabawi ra pud kay niuli nako diri. Nakabawi nako sa akong family kay akong priority bowling ba, konsensya jud kaayo para nako,” Sy said.
“Eventually, nagkasabot nami sa board members sa federation nga ma close ko sa akong family. Nagpasalamat ko nga ilahang trust sa ako-a maka hardwork ko sa practice. Akong commitment naa gihapon, kahibaw sila sa akong dedication sa sport, so gi-allow ko nila to transfer to Cebu.”
Sy revealed that she’s training regularly at the SM Seaside City Cebu’s bowling center.
Meanwhile, Ando said she was training for the SEA Games when her father passed away last March.
For her, it was one of the toughest situations she was in.
One of her biggest fans was her father, she said.
“Mas na motivate ko ug maayo kay kani nga SEA Games, para sa ako jud ni nga papa. Ako gyud ni giduwa para sa iyaha kay grabe ang mga challenges pag abot before SEA Games,” said Ando, who is also an Olympian.
In 2019, Ando, the pride of Barangay Carreta, debuted in the SEA Games with a silver medal.
“Nindot sya nga experience kay ikaduha nako naka compete ug SEA Games, ikaduha na sad ko naka silver medal.”
After the SEA Games, Ando and Sy will represent the Philippines anew in major tournaments this year.
Ando, who is a Philippine Coast Guard reservist, has already started training for the World Weightlifting Championships in November with the venue yet to be announced.
The World Championships is one of the Olympic qualifying competitions Ando needs to join to book a ticket to the Olympics anew.
Meanwhile, Sy will be busy in the last quarter of 2022 as she is scheduled to vie in the Singapore Open, Malaysia Open, Asian Championships, and the World Championships.
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