Baguio City jins don RP colors in 14th ASEAN taekwondo tilt

METRO MANILA - Three Baguio- City-honed jins are set to see action in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Taekwondo (ATF) Championsips, Saturday, May 4- 5, 2019, at the SM Mall of Asia Music Hall in Pasay City.

Joining the juniors roster (ages 15 to 17) of the Philippine Taekwondo Team to the 14th ATF Championships are Rama Chandra Liporada, Rain Ramon and Izech Brian Edwin.

This year's edition of the ATF Championships is hosted by the Philippine Taekwondo Association led by the indefatigable Grandmaster Sung Chon Hong.

Liporada, Ramon and Edwin will be banging with the best in "kyorugi" (sparring) against jins from Brunei, Cambodia, Singapore, Timor-Leste, Malaysia, Myanmar and Vietnam.

Sixteen-year old Liporada, who bagged gold in the 2015 edition of the Vietnam ATF Championships as a cadet -37 kilogram fighter, will now see action in the junior male -51 kilogram class.

Before being wooed and lined-up by the National University (NU) Bulldogs for Season 81 of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Taekwondo Championships, Liporada went to University of Baguio Science High School (UBSHS).

The Grade 10 NU-standout hails from Barangay Upper Rock Quarry.

Liporada recently tested waters in the heavier -55 kilogram class in the recent Davao City Palarong Pambansa where he settled for silver.

Fourteen-year old Ramon, is donning Philippine colors for the first time in the junior female -44 kilogram class.

She likewise battled heavier jins in the -46 kilogram class in the Davao Palaro, managing silver.

Ramon is a grade 8 student at the University of Baguio Science High School.

The 2019 Palarong Pambansa (Palaro) Taekwondo tilt and the ATF Championships are only two-days apart.

This means Liporada and Ramon not only battled heavier fighters during the Palaro, they were losing weight for the ATF Championships at the time they were battling better-nourished and hydrated fighters in the national multi-sport event.

Meantime, 16-year old Edwin seeking to prove "heart is might", will see action in the junior male -45 kilogram class.

Formerly a junior high school at Easter College, he is likewise a Baguio boy-turned-NU Bulldog currently wreaking havoc in his weight division in various competitions in Metro Manila.

Liporada, Ramon and Edwin are all members of the Baguio Defenders Taekwondo Do Jang headed by Sabumnim Arnold Oglayon.

The Baguio Defenders is home to a number of international medalists including 2014 Asian Games medalist Benjamin Keith Sembrano, current national stalwart Keno Anthony Mendoza, former poomsae internationalist Patricia Mae Sembrano, and former junior speed-kicker Christian Duntugan. – PIO

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